Connecticut has many assets that can help us grow our economy, create jobs, and address our serious fiscal challenges. But one significant competitive hurdle that must be overcome is our distinction as the most costly energy state in the country.
New England has long been at an economic disadvantage for energy costs, largely due to the distance from where traditional energy fuels were harvested and processed. This meant we paid the costs associated with constructing and maintaining several thousands of miles of pipeline infrastructure and other costs associated with transporting fuels to our region.
But technologies have evolved and New England now has an enormous opportunity to eliminate a long-time drag on our competitiveness and transform our energy future into a driver for economic investment, while decreasing energy costs, increasing reliability, and helping the environment.
Connecticut is home to one of the largest zero-carbon emission electric generation facilities in the region – the Millstone nuclear facility in Waterford.
We also have a small but growing renewable power industry that includes technologies such as fuel cells and biofuels being developed, manufactured, and produced right here in Connecticut.
And we have access to enormous quantities of zero-emission, large-scale hydropower just to our north in eastern Canada.
Solar, wind, and energy storage technologies are also advancing.
In short, we can now look forward to the day when Connecticut and New England will have plentiful supplies of competitively priced, highly reliable electricity that will continue to build on the enormous progress we have already achieved in reducing the environmental impacts of electricity generation.
But to get there, without seriously disrupting our economy and even worsening our current competitive disadvantage with respect to energy costs, we need to continue to invest in our bridge fuel to that future — natural gas.
New England generates roughly half of its electricity from natural gas-fired power plants. Our plants are the cleanest burning in the country and have allowed Connecticut and New England to dramatically reduce harmful emissions from electricity generation over the past two decades. Click here for full article