ST. LOUIS, Sept. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- The leaders of Missouri's electric service providers (cooperative, municipal and investor-owned) are projecting average double digit electric rate hikes in 2012 as they announce the results of a joint analysis of the rate impacts of proposed federal climate change legislation. This group is also proposing some policy changes to reduce the impacts. This legislation may be considered by the Senate later this fall.
The letter and brief summary of findings that have been sent to policy-makers are posted on the MEDA website at www.missourienergy.org and can be downloaded by clicking on the "Unified Missouri Electric Utilities Review of Waxman-Markey" link.
The Missouri electric service providers group that conducted this analysis determined that as this legislation exists today it will raise production costs so that Missourians will experience significant rate increases just as they are beginning to shed some of the financial challenges imposed by one of the deepest recessions in the last half century.
The letter and brief summary of findings show that the proposed legislation would cause Missourians to pay rate increases averaging between 12% and 26% starting in 2012 with the potential to reach rate increases of up to 50% should utilities be forced to switch from coal to natural gas for a significant portion of their fuel in order to comply with this federal legislation. The letter and summary go on to show that rate increases of between 25% and 42% may be experienced by 2020 and could reach 77% under the case where utilities are forced to switch to more natural gas fired generation.
Missouri ratepayers will pay significantly more than the national average under proposed climate change legislation because of the reliance on coal fired power plants. Over 80% of electricity produced in the state comes from coal. Nationally the rate is about 50%. The analysis released today does not address rate impacts from other causes.
The letter gives six recommended changes to the legislation that would significantly reduce cost impacts on Missouri residents and businesses and yet the key environmental policy objectives would be maintained. These six recommended changes:
Web site: http://www.missourienergy.org/