Our Pledge To You

Letters to the Editor

Illinois isn’t in danger of losing out on clean energy

FILE - In this Nov. 3, 2015 file photo, wind turbines dot the landscape near Steele City, Neb. Wind turbines and solar panels accounted for more than two-thirds of all new electric generation capacity added to the nation’s grid in 2015, according to a recent analysis by the U.S. Department of Energy. The remaining third was largely new power plants fueled by natural gas, which has become cheap and plentiful as a result of hydraulic fracturing. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik, File) ORG XMIT: WX102

Wind turnbines in action. | AP Photo/Nati Harnik

As operator of the nation’s largest electrical power system, whose territory includes the ComEd area of northern Illinois, PJM Interconnection acts as an independent and impartial voice in shaping the future of an evolving electrical grid that serves 65 million people.

Our core mission is to ensure the power grid’s reliable service at the lowest reasonable cost for 13 states and the District of Columbia. At the same time, we recognize the expressed desire of Illinois citizens to create a cleaner, greener fleet of electrical generation resources.

SEND LETTERS TO: letters@suntimes.com. Please include your neighborhood or hometown and a phone number for verification purposes.

Contrary to your editorial of Feb. 16, PJM’s proposed changes to the competitive wholesale electricity markets will not hinder the growth of renewable resources in Illinois. Rather, our proposal strikes a balance in which states can subsidize their preferred resources, including renewables or nuclear, while maintaining the benefits of the electricity markets. The markets have maintained a reliable, affordable, increasingly clean power system for Illinois and the PJM territory over the course of two decades.

The proposed market changes allow, but do not require, a state to “carve-out” its subsidized generators from the market, along with a certain amount of electricity demand that PJM is responsible for. The state would then arrange payments for those generators outside of the marketplace. It simply means that the cost of Illinois choosing to support specific resources would be paid by Illinois customers, not by customers in other states. It does not in any way equate to “sending money” to other states, as indicated in the editorial.

PJM agrees that wholesale electricity markets should respect the right of Illinois and other states to pursue their own energy policy priorities.  PJM’s proposed market changes would accomplish this, while preserving the great benefits of a dependable electrical grid that consumers can afford.

Frederick S. “Stu” Bresler III, senior vice president, operations and markets
PJM Interconnection

Border separations a humanitarian disaster, and criminal

A report from the Department of Health and Human Services Inspector General indicates the potential that thousands more parents and children have been separated by the U.S. government at the Mexico border than have already been reported. This humanitarian disaster has been perpetrated by the American government both through policy and bureaucratic incompetence, and it is criminal.

The ACLU filed suit almost a year ago against the administration of President Donald J. Trump over the practice of forced family separation. Now the Department of Justice lawyer is arguing that it would “blow the case into some other galaxy of a task” to require the government to undo the crisis they have created. There should be no sympathy for the president, for Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen, or for the bureaucracy that carried out this violation of human rights. Even if they make a significant reunification effort, they have undoubtedly created a population of orphans.They are guilty of violating American law, international law, and human rights.

Michael Hart, West Ridge