RICL: Keep private or make public?
Rock Island Clean Line (RICL) is a private company intending to build a high voltage transmission line through Iowa and Illinois. It’s likely you’ve noticed the white “Block RICL” signs along local roadways. Its opposition has become a heated topic among agriculturalists, landowners, legal professionals and concerned citizens.
First consider the disadvantage to Illinois’ utility customers. The minimal power that will be sold to Illinois customers will be sold at projected rate 50 percent higher than existing prices. Illinois has gone to great lengths to build a renewable energy infrastructure: Wind turbines, natural gas power plants and hydroelectric power make up a safe and reliable system.
A public utility company should be transparent to the stakeholders. Rock Island Clean Line has been very deceiving and misinforming the public. For example, they have been trying to get landowners and county governments to sign contracts and agreements before the project has approval. They have also filed motions to hide information. Private energy companies, like Enron, were focused on hiding information by calling its plans “confidential” or “proprietary.” RICL is following suit. We do not want another energy company like Enron with a hidden agenda to benefit only themselves.
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