|Recent CSI Headline|
Report: Good News Is That "Plan B" for IA, IN, IL, KY, MI, MN, MO, ND, NE, OH, SD, WI and WV Appears Positive; Region Would Get Over a Third of Power From Wind.
CHICAGO, IL. - The U.S region consisting of Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin and West Virginia would fare among the best of all the major sections of the U.S. under a transition to a clean-energy electricity future, according to an analysis released today by Synapse Energy Economics, Inc., for the nonprofit and nonpartisan Civil Society Institute (CSI) think tank.
The "Greater Midwest" region examined by Synapse covers three linked sub-regions, as grouped by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). The report defines the greater Midwest region as consisting of Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin and West Virginia.
The Synapse/CSI report outlines a transition to healthier, safer power industry nationwide and provides details on what this transition might look like in the Greater Midwest and the rest of the U.S. The benefits of this transition for the Midwest include significantly reduced air pollution from the retirement of all coal-fired generation and the potential to become a global leader in clean electricity technologies, especially wind power, which would account for more than a third of regional electricity generation.
Following up on a May 2010 report by Synapse for CSI, the new Synapse analysis outlines an approach for the Greater Midwest under which: "... a major expansion of energy efficiency programs slows the growth in electricity use, and by 2021 these programs begin reducing electricity use each year … [E]nergy savings at this level are currently being achieved by a number of utilities, and there is no reason why all Midwestern companies cannot achieve these levels within a decade. Second ... all coal-fired generation is phased out in the Transition Scenario by 2050, nuclear generation remains stable, and the region aggressively develops its renewable resources. In addition, these Midwestern resources are used primarily in the Midwest: annual electricity exports fall from over 80 terra watt hours (TWh) in 2010 to about 14 TWh in 2050. "
Grant Smith, energy advisor to the Civil Society Institute, said: "The Midwest is at a crossroads today. While the electric power industry remains obsessed with such dirty and needlessly expensive 19th and 20th century 'business as usual' solutions as coal-fired and nuclear power, there is an opportunity today to make the transition without multi-billion dollar gambles on unproven carbon capture and sequestration technology and risky nuclear loan-guarantee bailouts. In the wake of the failed Federal action on climate legislation, leadership from the states is even more important. The Synapse Energy Economics report shows that a clean energy future is within our grasp. It will take political will and leadership from outside Washington."
Geoff Keith, researcher and associate, Synapse Energy Economics Inc., said: "Our analysis shows that the Midwest could reduce air pollution and other environmental impacts dramatically, take huge strides toward mitigating climate change and become a global leader in clean energy production. And with its massive wind resource and skilled workforce, the region would be an attractive location for manufacturers of wind turbines and related components – one of the fastest growing industries in the U.S."
Key aspects of the report's "Transition Scenario" for Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin and West Virginia include the following:
The path outlined in the Synapse/CSI analysis report also would mean cleaner air in the Midwest and dramatically reduced with carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from the electric sector – down by more than 90 percent, compared to a 29 percent increase for the region under status quo trends. Similarly, toxic mercury emissions would fall 100 percent, compared to a much higher level under the status quo. Water consumption by power plants also would fall considerably.
NATIONAL REPORT FINDINGS
A major May 2010 Synapse report for the Civil Society Institute developed a scenario for 2010- 2050 that would provide the following benefits:
The full text of the Civil Society Institute reports prepared by Synapse Energy Economics are available online at http:///www.CivilSocietyInstitute.org.
ABOUT THE GROUPS
Based in Newton, MA., the nonprofit and nonpartisan Civil Society Institute (http://www.CivilSocietyInstitute.org) is a think tank that serves as a catalyst for change by creating problem-solving interactions among people, and between communities, government and business that can help to improve society. Since 2003, CSI has conducted more than 25 major national and state-level surveys and reports on energy and auto issues, including vehicle fuel-efficiency standards, consumer demand for hybrids/other highly-fuel efficient vehicles, global warming and renewable energy. In addition to being a co-convener of TheCLEAN.org (http://www.TheClean.org), the Civil Society Institute also is the parent organization of 40MPG.org (http://www.40MPG.org) and the Hybrid Owners of America (http://www.HybridOwnersofAmerica.org).
Synapse Energy Economics, Inc. (http://www.synapse-energy.com/) provides research, testimony, reports and regulatory support on energy, economic, and environmental topics. Synapse has a professional staff of 22 with more than 300 years of combined experience in the electricity and natural gas industries. Synapse assesses the implications of electricity and natural gas industry planning, regulation and restructuring. Their work covers various interrelated issues such as transmission planning, service reliability, siting, fuel diversity, resource planning, financial and economic risks, renewable energy potential and renewable portfolio standards, energy efficiency, electricity modeling, portfolio management, customer service and more. Synapse works for a wide range of clients throughout the United States, including attorneys general, offices of consumer advocates, public utility commissions, a variety of environmental groups, foundations, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy, Department of Justice, the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, and others.
CONTACT: Alex Grodin, (571) 340-0085 or email@example.com.