Wait! Is HRC (a little bit) Right for the Wrong Reasons?

Iain–For the most part, I agree with your post. HRC’s statement is inane.

But, in fact, an increasing but still very tiny percentage of our electrical power does come from oil. About three percent in all. Over the next four years, the Energy Information Administration reports, power companies plan to bring over 1,100 new oil powered plants on line. All of these plants are meant for peak supply on hot days days when people ramp up the AC. The number of these smaller plants has increased for a large number of reasons. But one of them is that they are reasonably easy to build while new “baseline”–mostly coal and nuclear–require years of regulatory approvals. (Most peak capacity is, and will continue to be, from natural gas.)

Building just a handful of new coal and nuke plants while taking steps to invest in new transmission infrastructure could likely reduce the need for these small generators and the fuel they consume. This could have a tiny impact on fuel prices. The best electricty-related action to reduce oil imports isn’t switching off a light, however, it’s standing up for policies that would create more coal and nuclear plants.