AEP / Coal / Ohio Utility Bailouts

Study: Ohio opt-out will cost state billions in benefits

WASHINGTON, DC — “Our new research shows that utility customers would pay a hefty price if more large customers were allowed to opt out of energy efficiency programs. In Ohio’s case, they would pay billions of dollars. Fundamental fairness suggests that because these programs benefit everyone, everyone should pay for them.

The Ohio legislature is weighing whether to allow more large customers such as manufacturers to leave customer-funded energy efficiency programs. When a large customer opts out, it no longer has to pay the programs’ costs. We’ve published several blog posts and papers about the potential problems with this policy. You can read those posts here, here, and here.

Our report estimates the opt-out costs for Ohio, which introduced a limited policy for large customers in 2014. Now the state is debating whether to expand this policy to exempt more customers. The policy would reduce opportunities for Ohio utilities to save energy and substantially increase costs for their customers, who have benefitted from program savings for the past decade.”

— Brendon Baatz, Senior Research Manager, American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy

link to full study