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PSC Predicts Big Costs From New EPA Carbon Standards

Environmental Groups Are More Optimistic About Long-Term Effects


The state Public Service Commission is warning state legislators about the negative impact new federal carbon emissions standards may have on the state’s economy. But environmental groups contend that the state can comply with the new rules while reducing energy costs.

At a joint hearing of the legislature’s energy committee, Public Service Commissioner Ellen Nowak predicted complying with the new restrictions on power company emissions could cost the state more than $13 billion over the next 15 years.

Fon du Lac Republican Sen. Rick Gudex said the new rules place an unfair burden on state residents.

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“We in the United States are being asked to clean up our act relating to this issue while China and India are building power plants by the dozen. I think what we are trying to do is first of all fruitless and second of all it’s a waste of taxpayer’s money,” said Gudex.

But Keith Reopelle of Clean Wisconsin said reducing carbon emissions is necessary to combat climate change. He said by using new technology and increasing energy efficiency the state can both reduce emissions and lower electric power rates.