There are a tremendous amount of reasons to keep HB6 in place. Chiefly, that if HB6 is repealed energy costs will go up….not something Ohio needs in a COVID downturn. FULL DISCLOSURE I SUPPORT NUCLEAR POWER BUT WAS NEVER PAID TO PROMOTE HB6. If you care about clean energy and consistent power that is not subsidized by the federal government with tax dollars to make it seem cheap (Wind and Solar production tax credits) then nuclear is your go to. Nuclear supplies more than 80% of Ohio’s carbon free energy. It would take years to replace our Nuclear power plants with wind and solar and at a tremendous expense – much more than the cost of current nuclear. If we want cheaper power tomorrow – we can re-regulate the electricity market and get rid of the middlemen that have caused our electricity rates to skyrocket compared to other States that never deregulated during the Enron era.
While re-regulation may sound counter-intuitive to free-market economics the free-market was alive and well with competition between states and an intelligently planned infrastructure for each state. Introducing de-regulation did not deregulate our market as it is highly regulated by our RTO/ISO which is PJM and we added middle men to our market yet did noting to improve the situation for Generators and Transmission. Since de-regulation
Jobs and electricity Generation has fled Ohio to other States. Providing a reliable energy infrastructure is more than just producing and delivering electrons. To have a robust grid and cheap energy you don’t want to transmit energy vast distances due to line loss. You want to have as much baseload power as possible because that is the cheapest. You want your energy infrastructure to be as predictable as possible. You want reactive power for industry. You want plenty of spinning reserves in case of an emergency. You want to harden your grid from a terrorist attack. None of this includes wind or solar.
Did we need HB6 – absolutely not. We could have let all energy resources compete on a level playing field (devoid of production or investment tax credits) to produce zero carbon emissions. Nuclear would have won out.
Why not replace everything with natural gas? Well that is putting all your eggs into one basket and well owners and exploration companies will tell you the price of natural gas is too low. They are desperately trying to raise the price by shipping it abroad, using it to make new polymers and lubricants, and even using it as a transportation fuel. Much more money is made on natural gas when it is used for item other than heat and electricity.
We have too heavy of a natural gas dependency on power now in Ohio. So much so that if we have another polar vortex many of us may be left without heat or electricity.