I’m behind the times on this one since this came out last year, but I just learned that utilities are doing sneaky things to support fossil duels and stop renewable energy at the local level.
In New Orleans, Entergy paid actors to go to meetings and argue they were for a new gas plant.
Any not once, but at least twice they did this!
And in Kansas, the Koch Brothers invented a group of Kansas seniors opposed to renewable portfolio standards – when no such group existed.
Sadly, we live in a world that is increasingly fake. I have always been a strong advocate of public engagement and local empowerment, but now we have to ask ourselves, "Is that person really a member of the community? Or are they fake?" We need to know our neighbors and identify these scammers before they have a chance to influence policy. Their success lies in our not scrutinizing them. It reminds me of wartime when spies were embedded in the community and you never knew who to trust.
I don’t think we should condemn every utility, but the onus should be on them to prove they are sincere. These kinds of actions lead to loss of public trust for all utilities, whether or not they are working behind the scenes and under the table to fight renewable energy.
We need to be cautious that, as we continue to push for 100% renewable energy, we are vigilant to uncover these utility and fossil fuel-sponsored charades.
directs research at the Energy Trans Lab