Environment Ohio Research and Policy Center
Ohio currently generates 85 percent of its electric power from coal, one of the dirtiest energy sources in existence. That makes our state the nation’s second-leading emitter of global warming pollution, costs us $1.5 billion annually on coal imported from other states, and threatens public health and the environment by releasing hundreds of thousands of tons of toxic chemicals into our air each year.
Renewable energy and energy efficiency offer better ways to power our state. By decreasing the need for electricity from fossil fuels, these technologies help clean up our air and protect our environment, while also creating new jobs and new investment.
Seeking to take advantage of this potential, Ohio adopted a Clean Energy Law in 2008 that puts the state on track to meet a significant portion of its energy needs with energy efficiency and renewable energy.
Two years into the implementation of the law, Ohio is saving enough electricity each year to power 43,000 homes, among other significant benefits. However, Ohio utilities vary greatly in their performance in meeting the requirements of the Clean Energy Law. While most of the state’s investorowned utilities have made significant progress, the state’s largest utility—FirstEnergy—has fallen far short.
All of Ohio’s utilities need to build on the state’s success to date by becoming leaders—not laggards—in the drive to a clean energy future.