Nolan Rutschilling, Managing Director of Energy Policy, July 18, 2023
Across Ohio, major employers, communities, and individuals are embracing climate and clean energy investments as a result of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the Inflation Reduction Act. But not everyone is on board, and the OEC is using all of our advocacy power to change that.
Despite clean energy’s growth, the fossil fuel industry keeps doubling down on dirty, expensive fuels. The oil and gas industry will do all it can to stop Ohioans from reducing dependence on fossil fuels. That includes lying to the people of Ohio.
This past winter, dark money group The Empowerment Alliance pushed lawmakers to add last minute language to House Bill 507, legislation originally focused on poultry regulations and food safety. The added language wrongly defined natural gas as “green energy,” among other harmful provisions (including fracking Ohio’s beloved state parks).
BUT, OHIO HAS ENTERED A NEW PHASE IN OUR ENERGY TRANSITION: CLEAN ENERGY IS COST COMPETITIVE, POPULAR, AND IN HIGH DEMAND.Nolan Rutschilling
We stirred up statewide press coverage to draw attention to these sneaky industry efforts. And
while we were ultimately successful in preserving our renewable energy portfolio standards, HB 507
unfortunately passed and was signed by the Governor on January 6, 2023.
The passage of HB 507 comes after a decades-long fossil fuel industry effort to misrepresent natural gas as a climate solution — rather than its reality as a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions.
Let’s be clear: natural gas is a fossil fuel.
Natural gas — also known as methane — is a fossil fuel. It produces carbon dioxide when burned or
released during transport. When leaked, methane is 80 times more potent as a greenhouse gas in its
first 20 years in the atmosphere compared to carbon dioxide. At least 25% of today’s global warming is
driven by methane from human actions. It is not green energy.
Campaigns to rebrand natural gas as “green” are one way the industry hopes to secure fossil fuels’ place in the market.
But, Ohio has entered a new phase in our energy transition: clean energy is cost competitive, popular,
and in high demand.
The OEC, with the help of our members and partners, is educating leaders at the local, state, and federal levels to ensure the clean energy transition is not stunted by misinformation or fossil fuel bailouts.
You can write, call, and engage local leaders in person to tell them: Ohio must embrace our rapidly approaching clean energy future. And you can help by purchasing clean energy for your home and
encouraging your workplace and local government to do the same.