The Coal Free PSE Campaign
Coal is a dirty, dangerous and increasingly expensive fuel. In Washington, if you are a Puget Sound Energy (PSE) customer, you may be surprised that over one-third of your energy comes from coal. While PSE supports many clean energy programs, a large portion of the energy supplied by Puget Sound Energy comes from the biggest, most polluting coal-fired power plant in the West—the Colstrip Generating Facility in Eastern Montana.
Right now, PSE has a momentous opportunity to invest in clean energy and create good jobs in Washington State by moving beyond coal. Instead of continuing to rely on dirty coal, which harms people’s health and the environment, PSE should replace coal with cleaner forms of energy.
Instead of sinking ratepayers’ money into a dirty and dangerously out-of-date coal-fired power plant, PSE should act responsibly and make good on its commitment to clean energy and the environment by investing that money to clean energy jobs in Washington State.
According to PSE’s website, the company continues to pursue "doing smart things for our customers and the right thing for our planet. We’re advancing clean technology and energy efficiency to build a better future."
Washingtonians know that coal is not who we are and it’s certainly not where we are going. Propping up an aging coal plant in Montana and throwing money at an outdated, dirty, and increasingly expensive fossil fuel is not the right thing for Washington. We can help PSE do the right thing and kick the coal habit.
Puget Sound Energy (PSE) can move beyond coal. There are abundant resources to supply energy to PSE customers without relying on dirty and dangerous coal, and specifically without relying on Colstrip. Sierra Club, in collaboration with other conservation groups, issued a report, Bright Future, that demonstrated that the Northwest has ample, affordable energy conservation and renewable energy resources to serve future power needs and fulfill our climate responsibilities while reviving our economy. We can cover future electric demands (including those for electric-powered vehicles), help salmon survive both climate change and the hydrosystem, shut down the highly polluting coal plants now serving the Northwest region and meet state and regional greenhouse gas reduction goals.
Over 150 coal plants across the country, including the Northwest’s
We are not blazing new ground. Moving beyond coal is a trend in the region and the nation. Coal plants in Washington and Oregon are on a path to retirement as our nation moves away from its reliance on coal. This has opened up the doors to a flood of clean energy investment and a new generation of clean air and clean power. Our future lies not in old, dirty coal-fired power, but in making homes more comfortable, lowering electricity bills, and creating a wave of innovation in the wind and solar industries. As we upgrade our buildings and install new sources of energy, we can create jobs, stimulate new businesses and create a diverse and safe energy future. In the next few years, PSE will be faced with increasing costs of pollution controls at its aging coal plant. They, and we, have a choice to make – pour hundreds of millions of dollars into an outdated coal plant or invest those resources into Washington State by supporting clean energy jobs.Energy efficiency and other clean energy sources can be affordable. Continued investment in clean energy is the sure bet to keep our energy costs low, protect the people and places we love, and invigorate our state economy.