Randi Swisley recently explained her understanding of who and what is Pioneer Community Energy (Journal, July 5).
She states that Pioneer Energy was created to promote economic development. This decision was reached by the Board of Supervisors without any effort to inform and obtain feedback from the community. I don’t recall ED being part of the Pioneer “pitch” to Placer County residents. I
I remember Pioneer stating they would be a service for green electricity with better local control and lower priced rates.
Recently PG&E and Pioneer sent a flier to everyone, “Understanding Your Energy Choice.” The rate comparison between PG&E and Pioneer shows a $5.92 monthly savings on an average residential bill, or 3.96 percent of the total bill. The electric power generation mix shows that greenhouse gas free energy provided by PG&E equals 78 percent clean power. This includes large hydro (units greater than 30 megawatts), which is not considered renewable under our current political definition, but it is, and nuclear, which is a 0 percent hydro carbon emitter as opposed to natural gas and coal. PG&E provides only 2 percent of unspecified sources of power whereas Pioneer provides 71 percent from non-traceable sources. This stark contrast shows that PG&E’s electric generation is verifiable from much cleaner sources.
Randi stated that the Joint Powers Authority that was formed to fund Pioneer Energy floated a $40 million bond that taxpayers are responsible for.
She states Pioneer has incurred $15 million in expenses to date.
My questions are, 1) What is the payback on the Pioneer expenditures? 2) Who in this government-run electric procurement organization is experienced enough to oversee this process? 3) Will the taxpayers end up paying more than they are saving?
My conclusions are, this is not the cleaner energy that they advertised, the administration of this process is questionable, and we might all end up responsible for a very big bill that we never agreed to.
Kathie Murray, Auburn