Brown Sky: The Truth About How Rocky Mountain Power Obstructs Renewable Energy

Please read Brown Sky, our 26 page report about how Utah’s largest utility, Rocky Mountain Power, obstructs renewable energy.

Executive Summary

Rocky Mountain Power, Utah’s largest utility, presents a public face which reassures its customers that the company is a strong proponent of renewable energy. It frequently touts its very popular Blue Sky program. Images of wind power adorn the utility’s literature.

However, the reality is that Rocky Mountain Power is heavily dependent on polluting fossil fuels, mostly coal, for about 85 percent of its power – a much higher proportion than most other utilities.

This report will show that Rocky Mountain Power’s public claims that it is embracing clean, green energy doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. It takes a close look at Blue Sky, a nice program funded by donations from ratepayers, which offers subsidies to existing or micro-scale renewable projects. But even though tens of thousands of ratepayers pay into Blue Sky, the program in no way changes the power that Rocky Mountain Power actually sells its customers – a fact that the utility isn’t very up front about.

Secondly, as this report details: Rocky Mountain Power’s attorneys and executives quietly but relentlessly work very hard to actively thwart renewable energy entrepreneurs and the families and companies who want to buy renewable power. Those policy actions have largely been hidden from the public, in arcane regulatory processes.

For example, the report shows how Rocky Mountain Power has fought to make it more expensive for corporations like eBay and Wal-Mart to directly buy renewable energy. It also demonstrates how the company is fighting to lower the price it pays renewable energy entrepreneurs – and how its lobbyists are in Washington trying to weaken the one federal law that has led to Utahns getting at least some wind and solar power via the grid.

Please keep reading “Brown Sky” for a fuller picture on how Utah’s biggest utility is blocking clean energy progress