Author: Community Perspective
Community Perspective: What I’ve learned as OCP’s executive director … and where the community needs to go
Community Perspective piece by Sam Nickels: As I wind down my 5.5 years as executive director at Our Community Place, I reflect on where we’ve come as a community over that time. (OCP just hired a new director who will start on July 3.)
June’s two biggest stories are the debt ceiling deal that cleared the way for the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) completion and the Virginia Air Pollution Control Board’s vote to withdraw Virginia from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). Both stories made headlines in and outside Virginia. Both outcomes were setbacks for pipeline opponents and RGGI supporters.
Dominion issued its latest long-range Integrated Resource Plan (IRP). Governor Youngkin announced that the 2023 IRP “validates [his] energy plan released in October 2022….” The plan calls for “new gas plants [and] advanced nuclear [that Dominion said] will be needed to meet soaring demand.” “Renewables alone aren’t expected to meet a projected increase in demand for electricity in the coming decades, Dominion … said in [its] … filing …. That means the state’s largest electric utility may seek to keep most of its existing power stations online for decades to come and seek to build additional small natural gas and nuclear units.”
A facility that stores renewable energy is coming to Chesapeake — but its development has raised concern among elected officials and residents about what say the city has in the matter. It will be the first of its kind in the city and will help provide emission-free renewable energy to the electrical grid as part of Virginia’s clean energy initiative.
Much has happened during this Earth Day Month. Let’s start with updates on some 2023 General Assembly (GA) bills signed and/or amended by the Governor.
Governor Youngkin signed several energy bills—focused on nuclear, methane, gas, and coal—announcing on March 23 his delivery “ on his All-American All-Of-The-Above Energy Plan Priorities”. Not everyone agrees with the plan or the priorities. The governor remains committed to his “quest to put [the] nation’s first commercial small modular nuclear reactor in Southwest Virginia.”
This is a special edition of a regular series of contributed news roundups about statewide environmental and energy news. This piece highlights, with links to further coverage in various media outlets, some of the energy, transportation, and utility bills introduced during the recently-ended 2023 General Assembly (GA) session. Not all-inclusive, the bills noted include actions by area legislators (Delegates Avoli, Runion, Wilt; State Senators Hanger, Obenshain).