New PRI Study Finds Clean Power Plan Will Raise Electricity Costs, Worsen Problem of Energy Poverty
Study Shows Some Will See Power Costs Equal More Than 10 Percent of Income
Interactive Map Shows Consumers How Much Local Electricity Costs Will Rise
SACRAMENTO – Low-income communities nationwide could face higher electricity expenditures under the controversial Clean Power Plan – in many states, equal to greater than 10 percent of their income – according to the findings of a new study released today by the Pacific Research Institute.
“Poor communities will be hit hard by the Clean Power Plan. Working-class neighborhoods across the nation could see rising power costs if the Obama Administration’s plan is implemented,” said Dr. Wayne Winegarden, PRI Senior Fellow in Business and Economics. “I hope that America’s next President will review our findings very carefully when charting our country’s energy future, and pursue free-market policies that will alleviate the problem of energy poverty.”
“This important study by Wayne Winegarden confirms that big government programs like the Clean Power Plan actually hurt low-income communities rather than help them,” said PRI President Sally Pipes. “While well-intentioned, the Clean Power Plan will add to the burdens of working families and perpetuate the cycle of poverty for many Americans.”
Among the study’s key findings:
- The current burden from electricity expenditures is higher for households in low-income neighborhoods compared to households in wealthier neighborhoods – even without the Clean Power Plan.
- Energy poverty will increase under the Clean Power Plan. Under each of the study’s different scenarios, average annual electricity expenditures will go up for all under the Clean Power Plan, but low-income communities will be impacted the most. The hardest-hit communities will see average annual electricity expenditures rise to 10 percent of their income, or even higher.
- States with larger populations of low-income residents will bear higher electricity burdens than states with a wealthier population.
- The Southeast will be the region most negatively-impacted by the Clean Power Plan. In South Carolina, families could see average annual electricity expenditures of $2,195, while Georgia families could see costs of $1,973 and Virginia families could see costs of $1,998.
- Young people under 25 and seniors over 65 will also bear the brunt of the higher electricity prices that will surely come from the Clean Power Plan.