Indiana’s Electric Cooperatives Alarmed by President Obama’s Proposal to Increase the Price of Electricity

Indianapolis, Ind. — In a speech today at Georgetown University, President Obama announced a broad new federal mandate to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from electric power plants. The President will instruct federal regulators to apply the Clean Air Act to carbon dioxide issued from power plants, effectively outlawing coal-burning facilities.

While the President’s proposal will impose a massive new climate tax upon all consumers, Indiana’s electric cooperatives are especially concerned because cooperatives are member-owned and share costs among fewer consumers. Therefore, any policy change impacting affordable energy has a disproportionate impact on Indiana’s electric cooperative members and the economic development activities in the communities they serve.

“The plan the President outlined today is nothing more than the implementation of Cap and Trade through administrative action. Through our grassroots efforts in 2009, Indiana’s electric cooperatives successfully fought legislative enactment of this policy in Congress,” said Scott Bowers, Vice President of Government Relations for Indiana Electric Cooperatives. “Indiana’s electric cooperatives stand with the majority of Indiana’s congressional delegation in support of reasonable and responsible environmental regulation. Unfortunately, the President’s proposal is neither reasonable nor responsible. We welcome the opportunity to work with our delegation to oppose the President’s proposal and its adverse impacts on energy affordability and reliability.”

In a letter written June 13, 2013 to President Obama, Senator Dan Coats, Senator Joe Donnelly and Representatives Susan Brooks, Larry Bucshon, Luke Messer, Todd Rokita, Marlin Stutzman, Jackie Walorski and Todd Young requested the President reject proposed EPA carbon dioxide standards, a key component of the proposal the President outlined today.

The President’s climate tax fails to take into account electric cooperatives existing efforts to integrate renewable energy into our power portfolios. More than 13 percent of the power co-ops generate nationally comes from renewable sources. Co-ops are also at the forefront of energy efficiency initiatives; reducing the need to build expensive new power plants.Ultimately, Indiana’s electric cooperative’s mission is to keep electric bills affordable and provide underserved communities the power they need to improve their quality of life,” said Rick Coons, CEO of Indiana Electric Cooperatives. “The President’s proposal will make electric power more expensive, causing families and businesses to sacrifice on top of all the other uncertainty in our national economy. Without question, electric bills will get bigger for the Americans. If the President doesn’t see the importance of affordable electric power, Indiana’s electric cooperatives will help bring it to his attention.”

Indiana Electric Cooperatives, located in Indianapolis, represents 39 electric distribution cooperatives that serve 1.3 million Hoosiers in 89 of the state’s 92 counties. The cooperatives are collectively the second largest electricity provider in Indiana. For more information about the association visit