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Ohio voters reject bailouts for nuclear power companies, says new poll


Michael Tadeo | 202.682.8114 | TadeoM@api.org


COLUMBUS, Ohio, June 7, 2017 – API Ohio today released a new poll showing that the overwhelming majority of Ohio voters oppose legislation that would allow FirstEnergy to charge its customers with a special fee to increase funding to its nuclear power plants. API Ohio urged members of the Ohio state legislature to reject this misguided legislation, Ohio Senate Bill 128 & House Bill 178.

“Voters across the state spoke loud and clear: 79 percent said they were opposed to a legislative proposal which would provide a bailout to the nuclear energy industry at the expense of Ohioans,” said Associate Director Christina Polesovsky. “Picking winners and losers in the energy markets sets a dangerous precedent and would deny Ohio consumers, workers and the environment the benefits of affordable and reliable natural gas. Moving forward, the legislature should follow the will of Ohio voters and reject this misguided legislation that could raise costs for consumers while providing no incremental benefit to the environment.”

“This legislation is a bad deal for Ohio consumers,” said API Chief Economist Erica Bowman. “It would provide a $300 million annual bailout to FirstEnergy at the expense of Ohio consumers for 16 years at a total potential cost of over $5 billion. We urge members of both legislative chambers to reject this legislation once and for all so that Ohio consumers can fully realize the benefits of our state’s abundant supplies of affordable, clean-burning natural gas.”

Key poll results:

  • 79 percent of voters agree that Ohio consumers should not have to pay a special fee to bailout FirstEnergy’s nuclear power plants.
  • 79 percent of voters oppose a legislative proposal to allow FirstEnergy to charge its customers a special fee to increase funding to its nuclear plants.
  • 83 percent of voters agree that the electricity market should be based on the marketplace and not by the state government deciding to grant money to particular corporations.
  • 60 percent of voters believe that consumers get lower electricity prices if electricity generators compete rather than the state government choosing what type of generators can provide electricity.

The poll results were released on a press conference call on Wednesday morning. The opening statement and results of the poll are available on API’s website.

API Ohio is a division of API, which represents all segments of America’s oil and natural gas industry. Its more than 625 members include large integrated companies, as well as exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms. They provide most of the nation’s energy and are backed by a growing grassroots movement of more than 40 million Americans.

Methodology

The study was conducted on May 26-June 1, 2017, by telephone by Harris Poll on behalf of the American Petroleum Institute among 801 Ohio registered voters, with a sampling error of +/- 3.4 percent. A full methodology is available upon request.

"What America is Thinking on Energy Issues" is a public opinion series provided by API, offering data to inform policy discussions and ensure policymakers and others know Americans' perspectives on key energy issues.

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What America Is Thinking On Energy Issues – Ohio (June 2017)

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