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A resounding NO to ComEd-parent Exelon

We received a strong response to a recent Facebook poll about a potential plan in Springfield that could raise our power bills by up $580 million.

ComEd-parent Exelon has made more than $21 billion in profits over the last decade, but now it says it might have to close three of its nuclear power plants (in Bryon, Clinton and the Quad Cities) if the state doesn’t help it boost revenue by up to $580 million. There’s been no formal proposal announced, but one thing is clear: Consumers would pay for it.

“Anything resembling a full-fledged bailout of Exelon’s plants would be radioactive for our pocketbooks,” CUB Executive Director David Kolata has said in the past. CUB has called for the power giant to fully disclose the financial conditions of the three plants–especially since all indications are that Exelon’s overall fleet remains profitable.

So as we prepare for what looks to be a major legislative battle brewing in Springfield, CUB recently asked its Facebook fans:

Should state legislators OK a rumored proposal that would allow ComEd-parent Exelon to raise our power bills by up to $580 million to boost revenue at its nuclear plants?

A) Yes

B) No

People found a lot of different ways to say NO! There were a couple “Hell Nos,” two “absolutely nots,” and one Russian “Nyet.” Out of 44 responses there was one nuanced response, from a loyal Facebook fan, Loveto Bike.

“Wait a minute,” he said. “We need to keep those plants running, but $580 million seems excessive. Perhaps a smaller number. Audit those books. I don’t want a rate increase but what are you going to replace them with? Do you want 2 days per week with no electricity…?”

A couple responses to Loveto Bike:
1) Yes, we do want a full disclosure of the company’s books to see what the financial conditions of the plants are.

2) We can’t solely rely on nukes to keep the lights on. Our most reliable bet is energy efficiency and renewable energy, which can help Illinois keep power costs down and boost job growth. Just last week, CUB joined the Illinois Clean Jobs Coalition in proclaiming that improvements in energy standards could spark more than 30,000 new jobs a year.

3) Illinois would not have a power shortage as a result of nuclear plant closings. A recent state report found “superior resource adequacy in Illinois.” In fact, we export more power to surrounding states than we use. Bottom line: We are awash in surplus power.

More responses from our fans:

Ray Nemecek Jr. Hell no!!?

Brad Zander B

Colleen Oliver No

Greg Lambert NO! NO! NO!

Jim Louvier No

Laura Esparza No

Amanda Rose Hicks-Barnhardt NO!

Loraine Burklow Creek B for god’s sake!

Barbara Wolke NO

Mark Rosenblum B

Jeffrey Rothbart Nyet.

Mary McClellan NO!

Kathryn Sullivan NO

Christy Szymanski B. Absolutely not

Al Becker No

Eric Thatcher No

Russ Carpenter No

Dianne Lachmann Uramkin B

Nadia R. Kanhai B

Margaret Kreier B no

Zaynie Rizado NO

Margo Eilrich Carroll B

Alanna Melin B

Tom Maton B) No! I wish I could schmooze some utility board or elected officials for $ anytime I need to make a bigger profit.

Sharon O’Donnell Dwyer B heck NO

Bill Martin No way!

Fred Wallin B)

Deborah Carlson No. I’m not served by Com-Ed, but the areas that are have a lot of poverty stricken people.

Patricia Uher-Kern Heck, no…

John Tiffin Nope.

Kathy Alcozer No

Joni Sorce No

Mike Barnstable NO

Sandy Morse B… NO…

Pamela Godsil B

Sue Holmes Gassen Hell no! They just raised our electric rates by 38%.

Frances Russo B

Michael Thornton B hell no

Marlene Drell Frykman NO!!!

Bill Sugas No

Adrienne Melamet Paladino NO, absolutely not!