by Brian Fadie
Do you know what sources of energy power your home and turn on your lights in Montana?
Now you can show and tell the people who make decisions about our energy future what sources you would like to see with a new online tool. PicMyEnergyMix Montana will send a picture of the energy mix you want straight to the Montana Public Service Commission (PSC), showing them what Montanans want as they consider the resource plan for the state’s largest utility.
Every two years NorthWestern Energy – Montana’s largest utility – is required to submit a long-term plan to the Montana Public Service Commission (PSC) outlining their long-term vision for what energy sources the company will use to power its customers homes and businesses. The plan is called the “Electricity Supply Resource Procurement Plan” (RPP) and the latest version was released earlier this year.
So, what is NorthWestern’s vision for the future?
- Almost zero new wind or solar: NorthWestern says they have met the minimum requirements of Montana’s Renewable Energy Standard and see no reason to do more, even though it is currently one of the utility’s cheapest and least risky sources of energy.
- A risky and dangerous all-in on natural gas: NorthWestern wants to meet almost all new electricity needs with carbon polluting natural gas plants.
- No priority for energy efficiency: NorthWestern has been exceeding its annual energy efficiency goals while spending significantly less than budgeted. Energy conservation works, but rather than invest in this low-cost, high-reward energy source, the utility gives top priority to building risky new gas plants.
This is not an energy plan for creating a clean and healthful future – it’s a plan to maximize NorthWestern’s profits – and as a for-profit company, it’s their goal.
It’s time to show the PSC yours.
Today we’re releasing the Pic My Mix energy-visioning tool. It is a simple way to see where Montana’s energy mix currently stands, and to create and share your own vision for the future.
The PSC is taking public comments until August 19th on NorthWestern’s plan. They need to hear from you about what our energy future should look like – even if you’re not a NorthWestern customer you deserve a say in these critical choices that affect us all.
The tool will automatically send the PSC your vision for Montana’s clean energy future.