By Eliza Laubach
Appalachian Power Company and Dominion Power released their electric power generation plans this July. While APC released a comprehensive energy generation plan plotting the next 15 years, Dominion released a short-term plan with different options emphasizing solar, wind, nuclear or natural gas for the long-term. Dominion commented that, before committing to long-term goals, it awaits the August release of a final federal rule to cut carbon emissions from domestic power plants.
APC plans to substantially increase their clean energy capacity up to 22 percent from the current one percent of wind, solar and efficiency sources. Following a region-wide trend, APC will also increase its natural gas generation by building new plants or retrofitting coal-fired ones. Coal power generation will decrease about 20 percent. Dominion also pledged to decrease coal generation, but suggested that this will cause a capacity shortfall with expected increases in demand by 2020.
Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe is calling for 21 percent of Virginia’s energy needs to be met with renewables and efficiency by 2030 and a 10 percent total energy consumption decrease by 2020.