South Carolina governor Henry McMaster has convened a summit of politicians and energy industry leaders in Columbia with the stated goal of “preparing for the state’s future electric power generation needs.”
McMaster is anticipating “continued economic and population growth,” and wants South Carolina to be ready to accommodate it.
Is it? Eh …
And are decisions regarding its readiness actually being made in the Palmetto State? Or … elsewhere?
McMaster’s day-long summit will begin at 9:00 a.m. EDT this Friday (June 9, 2023) at the University of South Carolina’s alumni center. According to a news release from the governor’s office, the summit will bring together “top federal and state elected officials, policymakers, industry leaders, and stakeholders.”
Multiple panels will explore “solutions to the complex challenges of meeting the energy needs of our rapidly growing and prosperous state.”
McMaster will be joined at the summit by his lieutenant governor, Pamela Evette, U.S. congressman Jeff Duncan, commerce secretary Harry Lightsey, Senate president Thomas Alexander, House speaker Murrell Smith, state senator Tom Davis and other government officials.
Industry leaders attending include Keller Kissam of Dominion Energy, Mike Callahan of Duke Energy and Jimmy Staton of Santee Cooper. These executives will discuss “the type and how much power utilities will need to meet future demand.”
As I have said throughout the energy debate, I have but one guiding principle when it comes to this conversation: Keep the power flowing (and the motors purring). If we can do that exclusively with renewables, great. And believe it or not, several of the vertically integrated investor-owned utilities in the Palmetto State – most notably Dominion – are relying on renewables to a far greater degree than you might imagine.
With plans to expend their use even further …
To the extent we can transition to renewables faster – great. But such shifts must never subject ratepayers or taxpayers to needless price increases. And they absolutely must never subject ratepayers to blackouts – or worse.
As I noted last month, government is using climate “science” to force investor-owned utilities and RTOs to dramatically scale back conventional power generation in favor of renewables – even though it is painfully clear these renewable power sources are not bridging the gap fast enough.
Rising demand for electricity will only compound this problem …
They key to bridging the gap in the immediate future? As I have often written, it is natural gas … which has been the real hero in reducing carbon emissions in the United States over the past dozen years. Unfortunately, eco-radicals keep blocking pipelines – making it harder to connect these power sources to our grid.
In addition to building out our national gas infrastructure, the sooner we can bring smaller-scale nuclear reactors – a.k.a. “small modular reactors” (or SMRs) – online, the faster and further we can lower carbon emissions.
THE AGENDA …
(Via: S.C. Governor’s Office)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR …
Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children.
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