For Immediate Release
FERC Commissioner Neil Chatterjee Has the Wrong Approach to Helping Coal Impacted Communities
WASHINGTON - Today, E&E News’ Greenwire released new documents it has obtained that uncover former FERC Chairman Neil Chatterjee’s meetings with and advocacy for the coal industry while FERC was considering Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s plan to bailout uneconomic coal plants. In its article, the news service highlights Chatterjee’s thoughts on forcing millions of electricity customers across the country to pay billions of dollars a year to prop up old coal plants that can no longer compete in America’s 21st century energy marketplace.
In response, John Coequyt, Sierra Club’s Senior Federal and International Climate Campaign Director, released the following statement:
"While we share Commissioner Chatterjee's concern for coal impacted communities and the need to ensure that they can transition to new economic opportunities with dignity, we vehemently disagree with his approach. Giving these communities false hope that coal will somehow come back by forcing electricity customers to pay billions of dollars a year to prop up dirty, uneconomic coal plants elsewhere is neither sustainable or responsible.
“Chatterjee's duty as a FERC commissioner is to follow the Federal Power Act and be fuel neutral in his decision making, not tip the scale toward the coal industry."
The Sierra Club is the oldest and largest grassroots environmental organization in the United States. It was founded on May 28, 1892 in San Francisco, California by the well-known conservationist and preservationist John Muir, who became its first president. The Sierra Club has hundreds of thousands of members in chapters located throughout the US, and is affiliated with Sierra Club Canada.