Coordinating Three Missions
Miles Keogh is the Executive Director of the National Association of Clean Air Agencies (NACAA) but writes in his capacity as a private citizen and unrepentant kilowatt geek.
If you think air, energy, and utility regulation are three aspects of the same animal, my response is that we should keep talking.
I should know. For the last couple decades, I've been on all sides of this thing, first working with energy offices, then as an advisor to public utility commissions, and now as the executive director of NACAA, a national association of — you guessed it — clean air agencies.
In that time, we've convened these three groups of professionals about a dozen times at a national level, to explore linked policies to help take on everything from the 1999 Southwest Connecticut power crisis to the Clean Power Plan. We didn't even lure them in with pizza!
Surely by now, clean air agencies, energy offices, and state commissions have worked everything out. Or, maybe moving away from a national implementation of the Clean Power Plan diminishes the urgency for coordination? Wrong! Our missions remain linked and the overlap between our issues is stronger than ever.
Front and center are the ways that our decisions drive each others' worlds. When a state commission approves cost recovery for a power plant or transmission line that changes the makeup of the fleet, it has important implications for air quality.