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Contacts: Dave Lundy (312) 953-1122, Holley Salmi (402) 691-9710,

NEWSFLASH: STOP Coalition Chief Lobbyist Phil O’Connor to Testify Before ICC Today In Support of ComEd’s $396 Million Rate Increase TEC Developer to O’Connor: “You simply can’t have it both ways.” TAYLORVILLE, Ill., January 10, 2011 — At an Illinois Commerce Commission evidentiary hearing today at 10 a.m., STOP Coalition chief lobbyist and spokesperson Dr. Philip R. O’Connor is scheduled to testify in SUPPORT of Commonwealth Edison’s $396 million rate hike request. For several months, Dr. O’Connor has claimed that a significantly smaller rate increase necessary to build the Taylorville Energy Center (TEC) would kill 35,000 jobs in Illinois. TEC’s developer is calling on Dr. O’Connor at today’s hearing to reveal how many jobs will be lost because of ComEd’s much larger increase and to explain why he has made opposing claims before the Illinois General Assembly, the Illinois Legislature and the Illinois Commerce Commission. 11/26 Chicago Tribune, 11/30 Testimony To General Assembly Against TEC: Taylorville Kills Jobs In a Nov. 26 opinion piece published in the Chicago Tribune, Dr. O’Connor said, “Common sense tells us that when the cost of doing business goes up, jobs are lost. Using standard economic formulas, this kind of increase in electricity rates will cost anywhere from 15,000 to 35,000 jobs — many times more than the jobs the plant would create. A program that kills 10 times more jobs than it creates would surely earn enshrinement in the bad policy hall of fame.” 11/22 To ICC in Support of ComEd: “These sorts of projects…can contribute to economic recovery” And yet only four days earlier on Nov. 22, in his rebuttal testimony filed before the Illinois Commerce Commission in support of and “on behalf of Commonwealth Edison” in their request to raise rates (ICC Docket 10-0467, ComEd Ex. 26.0), Dr. O’Connor stated quite the opposite, “These sorts of [improvement] projects are widely regarded as precisely the sort of direct job creation and investment activities that can contribute to economic recovery.” Tenaska spokesperson Bill Braudt said O’Connor should explain why he has testified and lobbied, repeatedly taking opposite positions on the job creation impact of TEC and ComEd’s improvement projects. “Large energy projects either contribute to economic recovery or they don’t. You simply can’t have it both ways, and yet that’s exactly the position Dr. O’Connor has taken with the General Assembly and the people of Illinois as he has sought to kill the Taylorville Energy Center on behalf of Exelon and ComEd.” -more-

In its Nov. 28 editorial in support of the Taylorville project, The State Journal-Register noted, “As the Tenaska foes’ hyperbole has escalated in recent months, however, so has our skepticism of the critics and the STOP Coalition’s underlying purpose. At the heart of the opposition is Exelon Corp., the Chicago-based power-generating and distribution conglomerate. As old coal plants shut down and power gets more scarce, Exelon — operator of nuclear plants — stands to benefit. Why should it stand by as a competitor gets help entering the market?” According to a University of Illinois/Illinois Chamber of Commerce study, TEC is projected to support 2,500 jobs and 16,000 direct and indirect jobs in its four year construction phase. During that time, ratepayers will pay ZERO for the $3.5 billion investment in the state’s economy. The study also found that clean coal projects that use Illinois coal, including TEC, will have a significant positive economic impact throughout Illinois, creating a “ripple effect” and resulting in thousands of new jobs. Tenaska’s Braudt concluded, “At exactly the same time Dr. O’Connor was attacking the Taylorville project’s minimal rate increase as a jobs killer, he was touting the economic development benefits of ComEd’s much larger rate increase. We hope every Illinois legislator disregards STOP’s self-serving claims of economic doom. In these closing days of the 96th General Assembly, legislators should decide whether they’re on the side of all of the state’s leading consumer advocates who support TEC or on the side of Exelon and ComEd. Today and tomorrow are their last chances to promote the massive economic development benefits of clean coal by voting yes on SB 2485.” About Tenaska Tenaska has developed approximately 9,000 megawatts (MW) of electric generating capacity across the United States. Tenaska’s affiliates operate and manage eight power plants in six states totaling more than 6,700 MW of generating capacity owned in partnership with other companies. Tenaska Capital Management, an affiliate, provides management services for standalone private equity funds, with nearly $5 billion in assets, including nine power plants (with approximately 5,400 MW of capacity), and multiple natural gas midstream assets, including storage gathering and processing facilities. Tenaska is applying proven pre- and post-combustion technologies on a commercial scale in its two environmentally responsible clean coal projects. Taylorville Energy Center will convert Illinois coal into clean-burning substitute natural gas, use it to generate electricity and capture more than 50 percent of the plant’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Trailblazer Energy Center in Nolan County, Texas, is expected to be the first commercial scale, conventional coal-fueled power plant in the world to capture a significant portion of its CO2 after combustion. This plant’s success would demonstrate how existing plants in the U.S. and China could be retrofitted costeffectively with this carbon-reducing technology. Tenaska is repeatedly cited in benchmarking studies by the Natural Resources Defense Council as having among the best fleet-wide records in the United States for controlling emissions. For more information about Tenaska, visit The Taylorville Energy Center’s Integrated Gasification Combined-Cycle (IGCC) with Carbon Capture and Storage process can be seen at, along with details on the project and the technology. -30-

Taylorville Energy Center  


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