CARSON CITY — A Senate panel voted Tuesday for a bill directing state regulators to require that long-term planning by NV Energy, Nevada’s major utility, factor in future costs of carbon emissions.
Senate Bill 165, on its way to the full Senate, would direct the state Public Utilities Commission to revise its rules to ensure that NV Energy’s business planning takes into consideration future carbon emission prices.
Sen. Maggie Carlton, D-Las Vegas, abstained as other Senate Energy, Infrastructure and Transportation Committee members voted for the bill. She said that the PUC already has the authority to require such plans and that the bill "is just going to say, ‘Thou shall do this.’"
"This gives the PUC no flexibility. They can already do this. I just have concerns about making them do it," Carlton said.
Supporters said legislation being discussed at the federal level makes it likely that companies will have to buy credits to pay for the amount of carbon dioxide gases they emit and that required planning for future carbon emissions would save both companies and customers money.