Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Battling It Out Over Carbon Credits

Margot Roosevelt broke down the ongoing fight over the Cap and Trade carbon credits for California utilities and public power producers.

Public power tends to rely on dirtier (read: "coal") power produced out of state, while investor-owned utilities are further down the green energy road. The new system would level the playing field, but at great cost to the public power producers and the customers they serve.
The LADWP is the nation's largest public utlility so it's not surprising that Antonio Villaraigosa and David Nahai are furiously lobbying to alter the proposed program to ease some of the pain.

One big problem, from a regulatory standpoint, is how to deal with power purchased from out of state. A potential solution is to regulate "first deliverers" who take receipt of the power when it hits California, but critics of that plan point out that often these first deliverers could be foreign entities beyond the scope of state regulation.

A battle royale, if ever there was one. Read all about it:

California utilities scuffle over cap-and-trade [Los Angeles Times via Grist Magazine]