Friday, January 25, 2008

Delmarva Power's Economic Interests

Delmarva Power has devoted an entire section of its website to opposing the Bluewater Wind agreement. The company's president, Gary Stockbridge, says he's balking at the agreement with Bluewater Wind because it will cost us too much:
We recognize the hardship that rising energy prices have had on our customers. That is why it is important to protect the environment while also protecting the consumer.
I simply don't believe him on this for two reasons:
First, the wind power project will cost us extra if fossil fuel prices go down significantly over the next four years — an assumption so far fetched as to border on delusional.
Second, Gary Stockbridge doesn't represent my interests. He reports to the management of Pepco Holdings, which reports to a board of directors, which is accountable to its shareholders. Pepco Holdings exists to earn a profit for its shareholders, to the extent allowed by the law.
By way of contrast, Arnetta McRae, who chairs the Public Service Commission (PSC), does represent my interests. She is appointed by the governor, who is elected by popular vote. The PSC exists to regulate utilities, to the extent allowed by the law.
There are various theories as to why Delmarva Power is fighting the wind farm so vigorously: The company is protecting the interests of its sister company, Conectiv, which operates power generating plants. The company doesn't want to tie up its buying power with a long term power purchase agreement. The company's management sincerely believes in the magical restorative powers of the free market.
I don't need to know which is true. (I do know that Delmarva is spending millions to kill offshore wind, and sending me the bill.) In the end, all I need to know is that Delmarva Power doesn't work for me.

6 Comments:

Anonymous Nancy Willing said...

Ack, and don't forget that the nuclear power component of Stockbridge's portfolio projection is fraught with all of the same genre of liabilities of wind and none of the benefits.

10:22 AM, January 25, 2008  
Anonymous kavips said...

The more I look.... the more it becomes apparent. The full force of 94% of Delawareans must be applied directly on the point of blockage: Four men in the Legislative Committee, 3 Democrats, and 1 Republican.

Nancy! Harris needs persuason in comprehending that his SEU program is solid and has our support if he will go forward with the advent of Bluewater Wind. He needs help in comprehending and understanding that his interests are no longer served by lining himself with the Al Qaeda guerrilla tactics of Delmarva, but with the Patrean prevailing force which has now garnished support from 94% of his constituency and is now relentless in its attack.

Does he have the same survival sense as those Sunni's in Anbar province, or is he doomed to remain one of the dying breed?

Nancy, you are not his enemy. Can you somehow reach out to him before we lose the movement on the SEU as well?

12:29 AM, January 26, 2008  
Anonymous kavips said...

By the way Tommy: "Gary Stockbridge doesn't represent my interests", either.

Thanks for the recognition given to the wonderful Arnetta McRae, who chairs the Public Service Commission (PSC).

Quietly in the background, she has literally been amazing guiding this process forward over the past year.

Hopefully the fight will end soon so we can laud its heroes.

12:35 AM, January 26, 2008  
Blogger TommyWonk said...

I agree that Arnetta McRae has done a splendid job guiding this process.

As for the SEU, some have discussed (I won't say who) how to protect the SEU's revenue stream from unintended effects from the wind farm.

10:16 AM, January 26, 2008  
Blogger Nancy Willing said...

I am very good friends with a member of the SEU council. That is why people assume I know Harris. I guess. I don't but I do constantly talk to my friend about the misguided talking points that are coming out of that group.
I will try to get closer to McDowell on this, persuasively speaking.

7:06 PM, January 27, 2008  
Anonymous Nick Fernandez said...

It's kind of brazen to make the statement that Delmarva Power is trying to protect the best interests of the public, when a survey showed that 90% of Delawareans supported the wind farm , even if it meant slightly higher utlity prices.

9:37 AM, January 28, 2008  

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