SPOKANE, Washington – March 18, 2022: Avista, along with utilities NW Natural and Cascade Natural Gas, today filed a lawsuit in the Oregon Court of Appeals seeking judicial review of the Department of Climate Protection Program (CPP) Oregon Environmental Quality. The companies are also contesting the power of the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to enact and enforce the CPP.
“Avista is committed to a greener future and decarbonization. That’s why we and our utility partners participated in the rule-making process as the CPP was developed to help shape policy that would allow us to effectively reduce emissions while maintaining affordability and reliability for those we serve,” said Dennis Vermillion, Avista President and CEO. “Unfortunately, the CPP does not reflect our feedback or collaborative efforts, and it is not a constructive path to reduce emissions. We are disappointed with the outcome and the negative impact it will have on our customers. It will increase their cost of energy and may ultimately inconvenience them by requiring them to replace their natural gas heating systems and appliances.Our customers value energy choice, which is why we are taking this legal action now.
Avista actively pursues a clean energy future. At the same time, it is essential to recognize the importance of balancing responsibility for the environmental footprint while ensuring affordability and reliability of energy for customers. Natural gas continues to be an important option for Avista customers, providing access to cleaner and more affordable energy, providing greater choice for customers and helping to ensure energy reliability to serve the community. . It remains one of the cleanest fuels and plays a key role in reducing carbon emissions, especially when used directly by customers in their homes rather than used to generate electricity to meet the same need. Compared to wood, oil and other fuels, natural gas improves air quality.
For decades, Avista has worked with customers to use natural gas efficiently, often replacing dirtier fuels such as wood, pellets, fuel oil or kerosene, which contribute to poor air quality or generate more emissions than natural gas.
While the Company is challenging the CPR, it will take the necessary steps to comply with the rule. For more information on Avista’s commitment to clean energy and clean energy goals, visit myavista.com/greener.
About the Climate Protection Plan
The stated purpose of the CPP is to create a program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from sources located in Oregon. It attempts to do this by imposing decreasing limits or caps on the attributed emissions of a covered fuel supplier. The Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) developed the program, and EQC endorsed it, under the direction of Oregon Governor Kate Brown. See Office of the Governor – State of Oregon, Exec. Order No. 20-04, 4(c) (May 10, 2020).
About Avista Utilities
Avista Utilities is involved in the generation, transmission and distribution of energy. We provide energy services and electricity to 403,000 customers and natural gas to 369,000 customers in a service territory that covers 30,000 square miles in eastern Washington, northern Idaho and parts of southern and eastern Oregon, with a population of 1.7 million. Avista Utilities is an operating division of Avista Corp. (NYSE: AVA). For more information, visit www.myavista.com.
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