August 23, 2018
I have sent members my draft comments for Working Group 6's report. Those are due back to the Working Group Leader Friday COB, so please return this to me as soon as possible so I can incorporate any changes you may have. As I mentioned in that email, the most glaring needs in those reports are that a disclaimer needs to be added to each report to clarify that the intent of this effort was not to inspire legislative action; that consensus was not reached, nor attempted; and the report does not reflect a consensus document. Further, no type of analysis been conducted on any of the points offered to warrant action. We are not knocking any of the ideas or suggestions raised, whether we agree or disagree with them, but it is important for readers to understand the why and how this report was developed in the first place. If any members need me to resend, etc. please let me know.
In the Stakeholder Advisory Group meetings, the NextGrid facilitators indicated they would add a disclaimer to the introductory paragraph. I have not seen that language and am trying to run down if language has been drafted and what the process is for review.
As a reminder, every draft report thus far is posted online and any member of the public may comment. If any organization would like to make further comments past what could come from the Chamber, you can do so. For each draft report, you can email the Working Group Leader directly. Their contact info is listed on the webpages for the working groups. For general comments or to submit white papers, you can email them to ICC.NextGrid@illinois.gov. Those comments will be posted. For more information on how to comment, go here. Any questions, let me know!
Thank you to all of you that attend our meeting last Friday. We had a great turnout and great discussion with our guests. A special thanks to our speakers and attendees, and particularly to those that stayed a little later than noon to finish our discussion on the General Assembly. I did not get through all I wanted to, so expect follow-ups.
Congressman Quigley kicked off our meeting. In his remarks, he spoke about all that is happening around the world with our elections and the general state of politics today, but focused in on the importance of finding common ground and the value of compromise when governing despite our current climate. Using potential climate change activity at the federal level as an example, the Congressman spoke on the importance of compromise when negotiating politically difficult bills.
Former EPA Director and ICC Chairman Doug Scott, now with the Great Plains Institute, spoke about carbon pricing efforts around the U.S. He noted the demand from consumers to buy products that had less carbon and how the market is moving in that direction without any federal policy. He went through the state of Washington's program, the RGGI states, and his skepticism on seeing the federal government act on climate any time soon.
ICC Commissioner Ethan Kimbrel also attended. While he did not give any remarks, we broke halfway through the program to give members an opportunity to meet with him. If members wanted to speak with the Commissioner but were unable to, please let me know and I can request a meeting. We appreciate the Commissioner attending to learn more about the Energy Council and the issues we are paying attention to.
Thanks again to all for attending! For those that were unable to attend and want to know what was discussed during the member only piece, I am happy to talk.
Governor Takes Action on Energy Related Bills
The Governor signed into law a few energy related bills over the last week or so. Listed below in no particular order:
SB3214 (Barickman/Bennett) would allow solar sites to claim as a "pollinator-friendly" site through IDNR if they implement certain site management practices that provide native vegetation and habitat and reduce storm water runoff and erosion, (this is a voluntary program).
HB4135 (Bourne/Manar extends the deadline for the report from the Flue Gasification Task Force.
SB3131 (Rezin/Butler) is a clean-up for the Illinois Commerce Commission.
SB486 (Harmon/Currie) provides a standardized property tax value for commercial solar energy systems.
HB5689 (Costello/Manar) puts certain state regulations regarding coal mining in line with federal requirements. The Governor issued an amendatory veto on the bill to remove the requirement for representatives of the State Mining Board mine officers be union members.
New Bills Introduced This Summer
SB3626 (Manar) sets forth geographical requirements for ICC Commissioners. The bill requires that two members be from outside of Cook County and the five collar counties, one member from Cook County, one member from one of the 5 collar counties, and one member at-large. This would take effect by the third Monday of January, 2023.
SB3623 (Munoz) requires that notice be given to the State Senator and State Representative of the district where a facility has requested a permit impacting air or water pollution. The public must be notified in 15 days from the application filing.
U.S. EPA Reveals Proposal to Replace Clean Power Plan
The U.S. announced on Tuesday the proposed Affordable Clean Energy rule, the Trump administration's answer to the Clean Power Plan. The rule would set emissions guidelines for states to curb emissions by focusing on on-site heat-rate efficiency improvements and gives states primary authority to determine the types of emissions controls needed to regulate CO2 emissions from power plants in their state. That could play out in a variety of ways in Illinois. Further details of the plan can be found at the EPA's website, and the proposal itself. Those interested in commenting have 60 days to do so. Further instructions are at the bottom of this fact sheet from the EPA. Our friends at Schiff Hardin have a great write-up of the new plan.
UPCOMING ICC POLICY SESSIONS
FERC Decision on PJM's Capacity Market Reform Proposal - August 30
The ICC will hold a
on August 30 from 1p to 5pm on FERC's capacity market reform proposal. Topics to be discussed are Illinois Perspective and the Impact of FERC's Decision and potential solutions to accommodate state policies like ZECs and the RPS within the framework sketched out in FERC's order. Speakers include PJM, Exelon, the AG's office, and the NRDC.
Transportation Electrification - September 18
Acting Commissioner Anastasia Palivos will host a
on September 18 from 1pm to 4pm. The policy session will focus on: "the benefits to transportation electrification, specifically of buses and fleets; the barriers to electrification; U.S. cities leading the charge; and the legal and policy framework models for success across the U.S. and in Illinois." This event comes after an earlier policy session this year held by Commissioner Palivos on electric vehicles.
SAVE THE DATE: ILLINOIS CHAMBER ANNUAL LUNCHEON - UNION PACFIC'S LANCE FRITZ KEYNOTE
Mark September 20, 2018 in your calendar to join us at the Hilton Chicago for the 2018 Illinois Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting. This fall Lance Fritz, the chairman, president, and chief executive officer of
Union Pacific Railroad
will keynote this exciting event.
The Council's are again hosting a cocktail reception prior to the start of the luncheon. Thank you to Energy Council member Enel Green Power for being this year's sponsor.
If you haven't registered yet, what are you waiting for! Tickets still available and
you can register here
. Can't wait to see you all there!
ARTICLES OF INTEREST