HEAL Utah

Utah Clean Energy

Rocky Mountain Power subsidizes new solar power installations through its Blue Sky program. But it’s also insisting it needs additional money from residential customers who have solar panels on their homes.

The Utah Public Service Commission is preparing for a hearing next week on Rocky Mountain Power’s request for residential solar power users to pay four dollars and 65 cents a month to connect their homes to the grid.

Thomas Sallai / Flickr Creative Commons

An environmental group says it’s a bad idea to hike the cost of clean-energy investments that are good for the community. That’s why the group HEAL Utah is rallying against Rocky Mountain Power’s request to charge solar-panel owners a new fee. HEAL’s Matt Pacenza calls the $4.25-a-month charge a “solar penalty.”

Thousands of Utahns say they plan to join a rally at the State Capitol Saturday. They want Governor Gary Herbert and the Legislature to do something immediately about poor air quality.

Salt Lake City folk singer Tom Bennett wrote his song, Governor We Cannot Breathe, to be performed at tomorrow’s Clean Air, No Excuses Rally.

Tony Frates/Flickr

  Last week, a judge in Price ruled that Utah’s state engineer acted properly in allowing a development company to lease water rights in the Green River for a proposed nuclear power plant.  Blue Castle Holdings is now planning to move ahead with the next step -- applications to federal regulators  for the plant itself. 

Blue Castle has agreed to lease rights to more than 53,000 acre-feet of water to operate a 3,000 megawatt power plant near Green River.  Environmental groups had challenged the agreement, and they may yet appeal the court’s ruling. 

Wikimedia Commons

Environmentalists are applauding President Obama’s proposals to limit greenhouse gas emissions by executive action.  But Rocky Mountain Power says one group’s criticism ignores what it’s been doing for years.  

Andrea Smardon

Clean air advocates filed a legal challenge last week against the US Environmental Protection Agency, claiming a new policy allows some coal-fired power plants to continue releasing haze-causing pollutants in Utah, New Mexico and Wyoming.  Environmental organization HEAL Utah was one of the groups who filed the challenge with the US Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver.