Clean energy proposal voted down by Arizona Corporation Commission

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A proposal for 1oo percent carbon free energy in Arizona was voted down at the Arizona Corporation Commission on Wednesday, failing in a final 3-2 vote.

For more than five years the Arizona Corporation Commission has been considering whether or not utilities should have a higher standard for clean and renewable energy.

The new standard would have called for 100 percent clean energy, including nuclear power, solar and wind energy by 2070.

Arizona Republic reporter Ryan Randazzo has reported on the issue in the past. He said members of the Arizona Corporation Commission have been negotiating the exact terms of the proposal, but reached a bipartisan compromise about a year ago by agreeing to move the clean energy deadline from 2050 to 2070. 

Republican Commissioner Jim O’Connor, who originally was on board for the proposal, changed his mind and voted against it on Wednesday, Randazzo said.

Democratic Commissioners are extremely frustrated by the failed proposal, Randazzo said.

“..this ends years of negotiations on this, and really they’re just turning their attention to the election, hoping that they can get a Democrat elected and somehow revive these rules,” Randazzo said. 

However, there is a long process ahead, Randazzo said.

“They’re not going to get a Democrat elected and then vote this in overnight, it would take years,” he said.

The main concern from the Republicans is increased prices, but findings suggest that the cheapest utility electricity is solar backed up by batteries in Arizona, Randazzo said.

“The people who support clean energy point to that and say ‘What are your concerns with cost? It’s the cheapest thing we can do,” Randazzo said.


Ryan Randazzo, Arizona Republic Reporter

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