Rural Co-Op Chief: Why Climate Regulations Matter

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In a special guest blog, Jo Ann Emerson, CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) explains why climate regulations matter and how you can get involved to help create smart policy.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently released regulations to limit carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions at new power plants that could lead to more expensive electricity for Americans and disproportionately so for those in rural communities.

Jo Ann Emerson

That’s why we’re asking everyone to send comments to the EPA through This easy-to-use online tool directly sends your thoughts to Washington so regulators understand the potential harm of these rules.

We’re concerned because the EPA has chosen to write regulations that rely on technology for reducing CO2 emissions that has not been proven at a commercial scale for power plants. This “carbon capture and storage” method might look good on paper or in the lab, but unlike Washington, we’re not willing to take the risk with your electric bills. And that’s why we value PACE and its focus on fair, responsible energy policies.

Already, tens of thousands of folks from across the country have shared their concerns. The country has not yet climbed out of the recession; many Americans are hurting financially. We need to tell the EPA that cost matters. Anyone can send a comment at so please encourage your family and friends, regardless where they live, to join us.

We agree with PACE that no matter where our energy comes from, we all have a responsibility to keep electricity reliable and affordable. Like energy policy itself, the regulations proposed by the EPA are technical, but an increase in your electric bill is personal. That’s why we need you to speak up.

Jobs and the future prosperity of our communities are threatened by electric bills going up. That’s why we must stick together.

We care about the price of electricity because we’re an electric cooperative and we look out for our members. And we’re concerned that the EPA is making a decision that could force an increase in what we have to pay for power.

That’s why we all need to take a stand and urge our families and friends to join us.

Please visit Just as important, get out and talk to people about what we’re doing and why we care about electricity prices.

Electric cooperatives are powering the future, driving economic growth and fostering innovation. And we won’t stand for ill-considered regulations written without regard to your economic well-being. Please join us in this important fight today.