Ohio Environmental Council, January 24, 2014
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Today, a broad collation of consumer advocates, small businesses, manufacturers, and environmental groups are praising Ohio Governor John Kasich for his continued leadership on energy efficiency, even as FirstEnergy prepares yet another assault on Ohio’s energy efficiency benchmarks.
“It is very important that opponents of the cheapest, fastest, easiest way to save energy and cut energy costs continue to hear that our Governor understands the importance of energy efficiency – both in energy policy and in job creation,” said Jack Shaner, Deputy Director at the Ohio Environmental Council.
As reported today in the Columbus Dispatch, Rob Nichols, spokesman for Gov. John Kasich said:
“We are always looking for ways to create a jobs-friendly environment here in Ohio. The cost of energy is a big piece of that. Helping energy companies control their energy costs is important, and we should always keep in mind that the cheapest and cleanest energy is the energy we don’t need to use.”
Nichols’ statements continue the Governor’s championing of energy efficiency, which Kasich named as one of his 10 “energy pillars.”
In announcing his goals, Gov. Kasich stated at The Governor’s 21st Century Energy and Economic Summit in Columbus in September 2011: “Energy efficiency, I mean it is a slam dunk. We are going to focus on it. “
“We agree that energy efficiency is a slam dunk, and we hope the Governor maintains his ardent support of Ohio’s energy efficiency law when the full-court press resumes early next year,” said Nolan Moser, Director of Energy and Clean Air Programs for the Ohio Environmental Council.
As was reported widely across the state, investor-owned utility FirstEnergy mounted a behind-the-scenes lobbying campaign to persuade lawmakers to gut the state-wide standard on energy efficiency. The standard requires Ohio’s four investor-owned utilities to help customers use less electricity by switching to energy-efficient equipment and lighting.
These programs, which have been implemented by American Electric Power, Duke Energy, Dayton Power & Light, and FirstEnergy already have saved Ohio residents nearly $2 billion.
FirstEnergy abandoned those plans late Wednesday, but pledged to come back with a stronger effort in January.
“We are prepared to continue this fight and with our broad base of support we look forward to the Governor continuing to stand with us,” said Moser.