Annual Meeting of the Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency
October 13 - 14, 2011
Minneapolis, MN, USA
Energy policy in the United States always seems to be ‘the next thing’ that the government will address, without ever actually addressing it. At the Annual Meeting of the Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency, PURC Director of Energy Studies Ted Kury discussed the important energy issues facing utilities and consumers today. He also talked about how the government’s inability or unwillingness to address issues related to the pricing of CO2, nuclear energy, natural gas, and consumer pricing reform, costs consumers and utilities money.
Every day, utilities make long-term investment decisions while assuming a future price for CO2, for example. Some assume that there will be one, while others assume that there will not. The fact that some of those utilities are wrong, simply because they receive no guidance from the government, will lead to stranded asset obligations ultimately borne by consumers. The costs of these types of decisions are important to understand, but is important to realize that there is also a cost of when no decisions are made.