Republicans in legislature try to block the New Energy Rules

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Republicans in the state legislature were looking to block new energy rules that would allow the Arizona Corporation Commission to regulate corporations related to the energy industry and other corporations and industries in Arizona. The effort is stumbling as they don’t have the majority needed to get the opposition bills passed. The New Energy Rules look to reduce pollution, create jobs, and more. We talked with Sandy Bahr from the Sierra Club, Chapter Director of Grand Canyon Chapter, and Reverend Doug Bland from the Arizona Interfaith Power and Light.
Bahr said the bills seek to limit the corporation commission’s ability to enact clean energy rules and future rules. They specifically prohibit the commission from regulating carbon emissions. Bahr said it would affect a lot of what the commission does. She said they also think it would be unconstitutional because it would affect rate-making. She said the legislator is trying to put a roadblock in front of these clean energy rules. Bland said it is a very significant decision. He thinks that it is not only scientific and economic but spiritual and moral. He thinks it is important for people of faith to “weigh-in“ on it.

Bahr explains the current renewable standards and how much will happen in the future. The corporation commission once The corporation commission wants all energy from carbon-free sources is planned to be taken care of by 2050. She said it doesn’t specify a particular technology. She also thinks that it needs to be done sooner, but these are an important move in the right direction. She said renewable energy and energy efficiency are much cheaper than burning fossil fuels. Lawmakers are saying that it would raise rates.

Bahr said she doesn’t think the legislature is really paying attention. She said the legislature does not have the expertise and should not be making those decisions. She said they have demonstrated that they are unwilling to address it. She also said this is not something brand new. We talk about the governor’s thoughts on this. Bland talks about what got him involved in this and why people of faith need to be involved in this.

Sandy Bahr/Sierra Club, Chapter Director of Grand Canyon Chapter & Reverend Doug Bland/Arizona Interfaith Power & Light

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