Environmentalists outraged at legislators actions to remove energy efficiency rules

Louisiana Politics

POSTED: Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - 6:36pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - 7:41pm

Energy efficiency laws just two months old have been killed, for now, by the Public Service Commission. Environmentalists claim it undoes years worth of their work.

"The chair decides he's going to rip that rug out from the rate payers of Louisiana and it's a terrible, terrible decision," said Casey DeMoss Roberts of the Alliance for Affordable Energy.

In one of his first moves as chair of the Public Service Commission, Eric Skrmetta moved to get rid of energy efficiency rules that took three years to pass.

"I am outraged at the injustice of what happened today. In December energy efficiency rules were passed by the commission and they're really good rules and we were really excited," DeMoss Roberts added.

Environmentalists believe the rules could have saved people lots of money by helping them add things like insulation to homes.

"Our buildings tend to be a little bit more drafty than most and by implementing energy efficiency we're able to have energy stay in our homes and reduce the amount of wasted energy, which inevitably lowers our bills," Jordan Macha of the Sierra Club explained.

Skrmetta said he wanted to see more information on the program, as well as examine if it would actually end up costing small business owners more. Advocates for the rules say the fight is far from over.

"We're going to galvanize our membership here in Louisiana, rally our supporters and let the commissioners know this is something that's important to Louisiana."

A call was placed to Skremetta's office but it was not returned.

The alliance will be placing an appeal on the vote to hopefully reinstate those programs across the state.
 

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