Coal / Energy

Clean-energy ballot initiative has its quirks

COLUMBUS — “A proposed Ohio renewable-energy ballot issue has some strange quirks: $13 billion in investments in wind, solar, geothermal and other energy projects over 10 years would be solely controlled by a secretive Ohio commission incorporated in the state of Delaware.

The next stop is the Ohio Ballot Board, which will determine if the measure should appear as one issue or multiple issues. If the proposal clears that hurdle, supporters could begin gathering the 385,253 valid signatures of registered Ohio voters needed to place it on the Nov. 6 general-election ballot. The amendment would ask Ohioans to approve issuing $1.3 billion a year in bonds, backed by the “full faith and credit of the state,” beginning next year and running through 2023.”

— Alan Johnson, Columbus Dispatch

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There’s more to wonder about in the full text of this initiative.  Some of the money would go to ‘energy infrastructure capital improvements which shall include, but not be limited to solar, wind, biomass, battery technology and geothermal facilities.’ The key phrase is ‘but not be limited to.’  This means it could be something else not on the list.  Like coal, nuclear, or fracking.

Some of the money would go to ‘research and development related to clean energy.’ The initiative does not define “clean energy,” so it will be up to this mysterious Delaware corporation to define it.  This means the money could go to such categories as ‘clean coal,’ ‘clean nuclear,’ or ‘clean fracking.’”

— Paul Ryder, Assistant Director, Ohio Citizen Action

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