|Posted:||April 14, 2021 12:09 PM|
|From:||Representative Craig Williams|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Building Forward Pennsylvania’s Energy Infrastructure|
|Shortly, I will be introducing legislation to help bolster natural gas distribution and electric vehicle (“EV”) infrastructure in our Commonwealth for the next ten years. This bill is intended to leverage the abundance of natural gas supply in Pennsylvania both to make that resource available to unserved and underserved communities and to underpin the energy needs for an ever-advancing EV market. This bill creates a ten-year bridge for building that energy infrastructure.
All major American automakers have announced larger lines of EVs, including mass transit and privately-owned automobiles. As a result, consumer demand for EVs in Pennsylvania is on the rise and that will certainly continue. The main consumer deterrent to EV adoption is the worry that they will not have a charging station available when needed.
Given Pennsylvania’s power generation fuel mix, our vehicles will be quickly shifting from a dependency on foreign oil to a demand for Pennsylvania-sourced energy. However, to take advantage of that shift in energy demand, Pennsylvania needs the supporting infrastructure in place to supply power to previously unserved areas with respect to vehicle charging. This bill gives electric distribution companies the regulatory means to build that infrastructure as it is their statutory duty to maintain and safeguard the electric grid.
Additionally, our Commonwealth is blessed with an abundance of natural gas, which is currently priced at historic lows. Residential consumers in Pennsylvania deserve the opportunity to take advantage of that abundance and low pricing. But, again, there is an infrastructure issue standing in the way, as there are many unserved or underserved communities who cannot access natural gas for residential purposes due to inadequate distribution networks. My bill will create a 10-year program that will authorize natural gas companies to use a very small portion of their revenues to build out natural gas distribution systems to our constituents.
For both programs, utilities must submit their long-term plans to the Public Utility Commission and defend those plans against various consumer-advocacy groups for cost prudency. This bottom-up approach will result in a locally customized and scrutinized approach to protect the public interest.
Please join me in helping to promote a smarter, more efficient, and cleaner deployment of energy use in our Commonwealth.
Introduced as HB1285