Yesterday marked the first two Missouri PSC public hearings on Clean Line's Grain Belt Express project. Additional hearings will be held later this week, and in early September. Get dates, times and locations here
Missouri showed them!
Hundreds packed the two public hearings and dozens spoke out against the project.
I think Clean Line infused spokeswoman Cari VanAmburg with a little too much perky.
"500 megawatts of clean wind power for the state!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" You're going to be seeing this in your nightmares for years.
You believe her, don't you?
As a project manager at Clean Line
Energy and someone who is passionate
about moving the wind industry
forward, I would like to address some
of the misleading statements made in
the recent article published in the
Moberly Monitor, "Line's health problems
brought to light."
How does being a project manager at Clean Line qualify this woman to analyze medical information and make recommendations about people's health? It doesn't!
After blathering on citing a whole bunch of studies that she thinks refute Dr. Smith's opinion, Johnson closes with this:
I strongly urge folks to gain a full understanding of direct current technology
from nationally and internationally trusted sources. At Clean Line Energy, safety is among our chief concerns as we strive to treat landowners with the utmost respect.
Trusted sources? Who's more trusted than your doctor? Some corporate creature with a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from the University of Missouri and a Certificate in International Affairs from Washington University
whose company stands to make huge profits from building a transmission project?
I strongly urge Adhar to gain a full understanding that she's not a medical professional, and EMF is an issue of perception. If people perceive that there is a medical risk from living in close proximity to high voltage transmission lines, then that's the end of the debate. No amount of additional studies tossed at a fearful public is going to change the mind of a worried mother, or a concerned father. Adhar should have just let it go instead of trying to out-doctor the doctor and question his professional expertise.
Dr. Smith's wife strikes back with this recently penned letter:
The recent editorial by Adhar Johnson, Clean Line Project manager has been expected, and her bias should be obvious. The information provided in the June 6 article, Transmission Line Health Problems Brought to Light, by Connie Duvall, was very careful to address ONLY the types of fields produced by high voltage lines.
My reputation is on the line in the community in which I live and serve, and the information used was carefully screened for accuracy. Since the June 6th article, additional studies have been uncovered which directly name HVDC lines as the culprit in adverse health effects. The information from the studies repeatedly questions the "trusted" sources quoted by Clean Line Energy's advocates. This technical information will be used in November to testify before the MO Public Service Commission in Jefferson City.
(Above Statement by Dr. Dennis Smith)
Clean Line managers and land developers have been flooding papers in would-be affected counties with their propaganda, touting their passion for wind energy. These power lines have little if anything to do with wind energy as they are not needed to utilize it. Clean Line execs typically implore the public to turn to trusted sources, which is exactly what we want them to do.
After all, the area of education of the Grain Belt Express (GBE) pushers is business and communications; their expertise is in the art of the deal, how to manipulate statements to their advantage, and how to turn a fast buck. Is this reason to trust them?
They have determined to discredit Dr. Smith because his research threatens their venture. Along with discounting him, they must also take down the numerous scientists, electromagnetic experts, and doctors who have done countless studies pointing to the harms of this type of EMF exposure.
Adhar Johnson, Clean Line manager, attended the Randolph County commissioner public meeting where a gentleman emotionally testified of his wife’s oncologist’s admonition that such a power line would necessitate their relocation. In a meeting at Rothwell Park, Adhar told me that the doctor had no business saying that, and then she handed me Clean Line’s go-to documentation of the one out-dated statement made by the World Health Organization (WHO) that there were no known health risks. Much more recently, the WHO has revised their statement and has classified the emissions from these lines a class 2B carcinogen, as has the Environmental Protection Agency. HUD has ruled the lines and towers “a hazard and a nuisance”, and FHA appraisals have to be adjusted to address the effect these lines have on marketability of properties near the lines. The highly respected, non-partisan, U.S. Government Accounting Office expressed many of the same concerns voiced by citizens regarding HVDC lines in its report to Congress in 2008.
Dr. Smith also discovered the following statute:
Exercise of eminent domain over private property for economic development purposes prohibited--definition.
523.271. 1. No condemning authority shall acquire private property through the process of eminent domain for solely economic development purposes. 2. For the purposes of this section, "economic development" shall mean a use of a specific piece of property or properties which would provide an increase in the tax base, tax revenues, employment, and general economic health, and does not include the elimination of blighted, substandard, or unsanitary conditions, or conditions rendering the property or its surrounding area a conservation area as defined in section 99.805.
Missouri Revised Statutes
Our Randolph County Commissioners have welcomed Clean Line GBE to our county for the exact reasons that the statue prohibits and have voiced at public meetings their support for those reasons prohibited in the statute.
Dr. Smith is trusted in this community as he has been in all communities in which he’s lived. I make no apologies in stating that he has had a stellar medical career, having graduated in the top 5% of his medical class and having received multiple awards and accolades for his single-minded service to his God-given mission in Public Health. He maintains excellent rapport with former hospitals where he has been employed and would be whole-heartedly welcomed back to any of those facilities. Consider also the editorials that have been submitted by the many respected members of the community, your long-time friends and associates who oppose this line. Shall we then trust some wealthy business people whose real passion is increasing their profits, or should we trust scientists and doctors who are devotees to public health and safety? It’s not a difficult choice.
Silly schemes and misleading names were in high gear during yesterday's FirstEnergy Q2 2014 Earnings Call.
You know you're in for a treat when Tony the Trickster opens the festivities with another one of his *heavy sighs
FirstEnergy announced its new plan to make Ohio consumers assume all the risk of its unregulated, competitive generation fleet and called it, "Powering Ohio's Progress." But, let's get real here, FirstEnergy should really call it "Powering Our Profits," because that's its purpose.
And I blame the birth of this ridiculous scheme on the West Virginia Public Service Commission, who set up West Virginia's consumers to absorb the company's risk on its Harrison power station last year. In that scheme, West Virginia customers took on the burden of paying the operating costs of the Harrison power station by purchasing all its generation. In turn, FirstEnergy would sell any excess power into regional markets and return the profit it earned doing so to the consumers. Sounds great, right? However, the cost of owning and operating Harrison is greater than any profits that may be derived from selling excess power into the market, therefore, consumers would end up paying more. But, the WV PSC added one important term to its crazy plan that required the company to use the profits from market sales of power to pay down the "acquisition adjustment" fee of acquiring Harrison that was added to rates.
It is because the WVPSC allowed FirstEnergy to foist the risk of owning and operating Harrison onto its consumers that FirstEnergy got so encouraged to attempt to foist the risk of two of its other competitive plants onto Ohio consumers.
But, the big difference here is that West Virginia is a fully regulated state, while Ohio is a competitive state. In Ohio, electric customers can choose their generation supplier, but not their distribution provider. The electric distribution system is owned and operated by the utility who traditionally served the customers. Even deregulated states cannot change that, unless they allow other companies to construct their own separate distribution system to serve customers, and that's neither economic nor logical. Therefore, even in deregulated states, customers are still served by, and receive a bill from, their regulated distribution provider. Where generation is competitive, the distribution company simply adds the charge from your generation company to your bill and passes the costs through to you.
FirstEnergy's Powering Our Profits surcharge would be tied to its regulated distribution affiliates in Ohio. The charge is non-bypassable, which means that it would be part of your distribution service and you would pay it no matter who your generation provider is.
So, let's look at this... FirstEnergy Solutions is the FirstEnergy subsidiary that owns the competitive generators. As the owner, FES must cover the entire cost to own and operate the plants, and in return it keeps any profits or absorbs any losses that result from selling the generation into the competitive power market. But, market prices have been low and are not expected to recover any time soon. This means that FES has been subject to more losses than profits from the generators it owns. So, FirstEnergy's scheme will force its regulated distribution companies to enter into a contract to purchase all the power generated by FES's plants at a set price that will cover FES's costs and pay it an 11% profit. Suddenly, FES's generators are profitable and risk-free! But the distribution customers have a bunch of very expensive power they have purchased. Can they use it? No! FirstEnergy's POP plan requires the distribution companies to sell the generation they have purchased into the competitive power market at whatever price it can get. FirstEnergy says that in the first three years, where prices can be predicted, the distribution companies and their ratepayers will take a loss on the sale of power. However, FirstEnergy says that its crystal ball predicts that power prices will rise in the remaining years of the 15 year contract and that a profit will be made selling purchased power into the market. Gotta ask... if FirstEnergy is so certain there's a profit for these competitive generation plants just over the horizon, why don't they hold on them? Because there isn't. It's all smoke and mirrors, hopes and dreams.
FirstEnergy wants to hand the risky hot potato of owning uncompetitive generators to its Ohio distribution customers so that they can absorb the risk of market prices.
What a bunch of crooks!
Block Grain Belt Express-Missouri is calling on its members, and all Missourians, to speak out about the Grain Belt Express transmission project at important Public Service Commission hearings slated to begin next week.
"We really cannot over-emphasize how crucial these public hearings are to preventing the precedent of an out-of-state company receiving the state’s power of eminent domain to take private property for its speculative, for-profit venture,” said Jennifer Gatrel, spokeswoman for Block GBE. “We must stand together as a community to protect our property rights!”
The first hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, August 12 at 11:00 a.m. at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Monroe City. That hearing will be closely followed by one at 6:00 p.m. the same day at the Hannibal-LaGrange University Theater Auditorium in Hannibal. Other dates include August 14 in Marceline and Moberly, September 3 in Cameron and St. Joseph, and September 4 in Hamilton and Carrollton.
Block GBE leadership advises citizens who wish to participate to arrive early to have their names added to the speakers’ list, and immediately find a seat inside the meeting room.
Mary Mauch, spokeswoman for the Block RICL Illinois citizens group fighting Clean Line’s Rock Island Clean Line project, has been speaking out about some of the tactics Clean Line used in Illinois last year to pack the public hearings with incentivized speakers and prevent affected landowners from having an opportunity to make their views heard.
“Clean Line bussed in groups of students, offered them a free dinner, dressed them in Clean Line t-shirts and handed out talking points that supported RICL. However, it was clear that the students were ill-informed about the actual purpose and details of the project” said Mauch. “The most disturbing aspect of Clean Line’s stacking of the speaker pool was that many affected landowners who had driven long distances to speak were turned away without a chance to have their voices heard,” she added.
Block GBE believes that Clean Line may be planning a similar scheme in Missouri based on emails and other documents that were divulged by the company during an earlier complaint by Missouri Landowners Alliance regarding Clean Line’s public relations practices.
Group spokesperson Jennifer Gatrel said that the emails revealed that Clean Line had been offering students pizza parties and other “swag” in exchange for gathering signatures on a petition to the PSC supporting Grain Belt Express, and that Clean Line has been planning to bus in college students to the Missouri public hearings for months.
“This is how the transmission permitting game is played,” said Keryn Newman, a nationally-recognized grassroots consultant who observed Clean Line’s efforts to mute the comments of affected landowners in Illinois last fall. “It’s about an effort to simply out-number and out-shout impacted landowners with large numbers of indifferent individuals acting at company direction while motivated by freebies or promises of a fun party with as many friends as they can bring along,” she added.
Some of Block GBE's major concerns are property rights, property devaluation, health effects, and the impediments to farming posed by the lines. Citizens interested in standing up for Missouri and showing Grain Belt Express how much they care about their communities and property rights can get more information about the public hearings at blockgbemo.com
or by calling 660-232-1280.
An updated copy of the public hearing schedule can be found here
Copies of the Clean Line emails can be viewed here.
I think PPL needs to do a round of drug testing of its employees. Whoever came up with this idiotic idea must be on something.
PPL announced today that it had "submitted an application to PJM" to build a 725-mile 500kV line, estimated to cost $6B, through four mid-Atlantic states.
Never going to happen.
Residents of affected states are still reeling from PJM's last big transmission building idea, Project Mountaineer, that cost them billions, including nearly half a billion dollars for planned projects that were never built. Try it, PPL, and you will experience coordinated, strategic opposition like you've never seen before!
The Morning Call seems to be the first media outlet to... err... call PPL out on its outrageous money-making scheme. PPL interstate transmission project both costly and lucrative: Project would fill utility coffers while costing ratepayers billions of dollars.
Morning Call says:
The project also would be a significant source of revenue for PPL Corp., PPL Electric Utilities' Allentown-based parent. Under Federal Energy Regulatory Commission rules designed to encourage infrastructure investment, utilities may earn a profit of 11.68 percent on transmission projects.
That translates into a profit of up to $700 million. PPL would share the money with any other utilities that participate in the project.
PPL customers, meanwhile, would see the cost, including utility profits, reflected in their rates — though the burden of paying for the project would be shared by ratepayers in all four of the states involved.
But, Morning Call only sees the tip of this iceberg. PPL can apply to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for transmission rate incentives that would up its profits significantly. In addition to incentive ROE adders that can increase the 11.68 percent several percentage points, PPL can also ask for guaranteed cost recovery in event of abandonment, a return on construction work in progress that enables them to begin earning that juicy return immediately, even before the project is completed, and many other outrageous financial rewards.
In addition, Morning Call's math is wrong. The $700 million profit the reporter calculated is only that earned in THE FIRST YEAR of operation. Transmission project rates work sort of like a 40-year mortgage. The return is calculated and paid on the depreciating balance of the project cost every year! So, in the first year of operation, PPL would earn a return on $6B and collect a certain amount of depreciation on the project assets that would lower the balance owed by ratepayers. The second year, PPL would earn a return on the depreciated balance, and additional depreciation. And so on, over the 40 year (or more) life of the capital assets. PPL's possible profit from this ridiculous project is a nearly endless goldmine!
And, one last thing Morning Call gets wrong -- this project will be paid for, in part, by ratepayers in all 13 states in the PJM region because of its size. A 500kV project built in PJM is cost allocated at 50% to all ratepayers based on peak usage, with the other 50% being assigned to the cost causers/beneficiaries.
Moving right along into PPL's feeble assertions that its project will:
If approved, PPL predicts, the project will improve energy reliability and security and provide customer savings by eliminating transmission bottlenecks and encouraging development of lower-cost natural gas-fueled generation plants.
The new plants would help replace energy supplied today primarily by coal-fired plants that, under increasingly stringent federal air quality standards, are expected to be retired in coming years.
This doesn't even make sense. The coal-fired plants that will be closing are located in the Ohio valley, not on the east coast. Once those coal-burners are offline, it will free up significant transmission capacity for any new "mine mouth" Marcellus shale gas-fired plants built in the Ohio valley. Why would we need to build a new west to east transmission line when there's already plenty of them sitting idle due to coal-plant closings?
PPL says they will have a robust public input process to find out where to site the line. Seriously? That strategy doesn't work anymore. It's all about need for the line in the first place, not where to put it. Get with the brave new world of transmission opposition, PPL!
And speaking of siting the line... where is that new Maryland substation supposed to be on that featureless map? If you compare it to a real map of Maryland, it looks like it's in Howard or Carroll counties. But, what if there was land available in neighboring Frederick County for a proposed substation? Oh, deja vu!
This has got to be the most thoughtless transmission proposal I've ever seen.
Never going to happen.
Holy corporate reputation issues, Batman!
FirstEnergy wannabe-spinner Charlene Gilliam (All right?) crashed and burned at a Hampshire County Commission meeting yesterday. Bless her heart, it probably wasn't all her fault. It's because she works for a company that has ruined its reputation in this state (and beyond) through a series of greedy, self-interested attacks on its customers and employees.
The people have had it with FirstEnergy's corporate disinterest in the hand that feeds them. And FirstEnergy is too STOOPID to have seen this one coming. Sometimes, I wonder how my lights stay on at all, and then I remember that any smart people who still work for FirstEnergy are the ones driving the bucket trucks that come to our rescue. It's upper management that has been snorting the STOOPID sauce.
Commissioner Hott seems to agree:
“What I think would help is to get some of these guys with ties on to come down and see what’s actually going on. They need guidance at a higher level,” Hott said.
Like maybe Charlene should have brought this character along yesterday?
EUCI and its stable of vacationing utility executives are going to be partying it up at the Roosevelt Hotel
in midtown Manhattan next month.
So, what pretense are they using this time? "Strategic Communication for Transmission Projects." Well, at least they have abandoned the charade that their public relations fabrications are about "participating with the public" this time.
Instead, it's all about manipulating public opinion, or so they think. Topics include:
How Utilities Effectively Manage the Media
Industry experts will discuss how to frame and "sell" transmission projects as the beneficial investments that they are on behalf of the customers. Attendees will learn how these energy executives keep messaging succinct, consistent and well-positioned. Panelists will discuss successful strategies and tactics for interacting with the media.
Does this include a lesson in gagging and tying opposition leaders up in the corner? Otherwise, they're only fooling themselves. The opposition also knows how to "effectively manage the local media," and they know how to do it better, without resorting to threats and lies.
Is this really about educating the public about the truth and reality of transmission, or is it about "selling" a fantasy version of transmission that doesn't include any detriments or drawbacks? Sorry, that ship has sailed. The public simply doesn't believe you anymore. And reporters hate you and all the smoke you blow up their ass.
And speaking of "selling," I'm starting to wonder if EUCI is more about selling the products and services of its "instructors" to conference attendees:
EMF: What the Public Wants to Know and Why It Matters to Your Project
Public concern about electric and magnetic fields (EMF) and related potential health effects began in the late 1970s in association with higher voltage transmission lines and desk top computers. While concern about the latter has largely diminished, concern about EMF from transmission lines and substations continues and is sometimes a major issue in the siting and permitting of these facilities. Our experience demonstrates that presenting technically accurate comparisons of exposures from existing and proposed facilities provides a good context for communicating with the public. Sharing the results of experimental and epidemiology research studies and the perspectives of national and international health and scientific agencies is an effective method to assuage public concern. This session will teach you how to get the science right in your public outreach messages about EMF.
William H. Bailey, Ph.D., Principal Scientist, Center for Exposure Assessment & Dose Reconstruction, Exponent
I think Dr. Bailey has no idea what the public really wants to know about EMF, but he probably does know why it matter$ to "you."
Here's what the public really wants to know about EMF:
The professional opinion of a local physician, not the opinion of a company-paid, industry-funded "scientist." Sorry, transmission developers, you just can't buy local credibility.
But, the real fun is at the "post-conference workshop" where the blind will lead the blind in this exercise:
Utilizing Mediation and Negotiation Skills to Diffuse Project Opposition
Inevitably, utility infrastructure projects draw some opposition, in person or through social media. This workshop is designed to identify the real issues behind project opposition, and to utilize mediation and negotiation strategies to gain support. Participants will explore the dynamics of conflict, perceived power imbalances, communication skills, and neutral positioning. Utilizing skill building exercises and strategies for reaching agreements, attendees will learn how to be an effective medium between the project owner and project communities. You will also learn effective strategies and tactics, and share in resolving real opposition issues from current and past projects. You are encouraged to bring your current project issues to develop a resolution strategy.
Identify the concerns behind opposition
Evaluate when and when not to utilize social media to counter opposition attacks
Demonstrate how to properly communicate your message through application and critique.
Knowing your demographics and what is important to your project community
Understanding how to communicate project needs
Utilizing data to create visuals showing system constraints, demand, growth
Educating the opposition through clearly understood messaging
Opposition Working Groups
Seeing your project from the view of the opposition
Working group structure
Using project benefits to the communities advantage
Formulating the strategy of "give and take"
Evaluating how to answer questions such as:
Why not go underground?
Will this harm my property value?
Should we be concerned about EMF?
Developing resolution strategies for your current project opposition
"Seeing your project from the view of the opposition?" And how many transmission projects has EUCI's instructor opposed? My guess would be none. There they go again, attempting to teach a subject they know nothing about.
I do like the new theme I see running through all EUCI's more recent transmission opposition workshops, though. The acknowledgement that opposition has changed, the public is more knowledgeable than before, and that transmission developers are embarking on a strange, new world where their opposition is increasingly organized, strategic and successful is a nice change of pace. Because the first step on the road to recovery is admitting you have a problem, right, EUCI?
PJM officials said that while this solution was comparable to other projects based on such factors as cost, schedule and the ability to address the reliability concerns, the Hope Creek-Red Lion 500-kV line was superior in terms of constructability.
Seriously, PJM? Who's giving you advice about "constructability?" The same geniuses who thought PATH and MAPP were good ideas? Those two projects turned out not to be so "constructable" after all, and have left PJM ratepayers footing a bill for more than $350M for projects that never even put a shovel in the ground!
The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities said PJM’s analysis of the 500-kV option underestimated likely public opposition.
Ya think? Just because the new transmission line parallels an existing one does NOT mean that affected landowners will welcome it with open arms. In fact, these landowners already know what it's like to live with a transmission line across their land, and feel they have already made the ultimate sacrifice for "the public good." They will NOT want another one, and will fight tooth and nail to kill this project.
And, guess what? They'll have plenty of help from other transmission opposition groups that have perfected the art of public opposition. After all, we've had some of the best teachers in the world to show us all the ins and outs of transmission project strategy, and we like to "pay it forward."
So, if you're a landowner in Salem County, New Jersey, who already has a 500kV transmission line in your backyard, check out the map at RTO Insider to see if you're one of "the chosen." I am looking forward to meeting you!
Our friends at Clean Line have been as busy as a nasty nest of yellow jackets this past week, while I was tied up with other things. So, on this beautiful Sunday, let's hunker down around the campfire and catch up on some scary stories...
My multilingual, Arkansan friend, Doc, alerted me to an interesting discovery this week. Clean Line's project manager for its Plains & Eastern "Clean" Line, slated to plow through Arkansas like Godzilla on his way to Tokyo, is a Mr. Mario Hurtado. In the Spanish language, the word "hurtado" means "to steal." So, Clean Line is sending out some guy named "to steal" to... ummm... steal land from Arkansans. Brilliant! Perhaps Clean Line watches too many old movies and expected its opponents in Arkansas to behave like movie characters...
...and not like multilingual PhD's.
So... Arkansas... Beware the Hurtado!
My friend Doc says he looks like this:
Meanwhile, in other "Clean" news from Arkansas...
"Clean" Line has submitted a second application for negotiated rate authority from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
I guess their first one wasn't good enough, since they didn't even bother to mention it in their new filing. So, inquiring minds want to know... is "Clean" Line just stupid, or are they trying to pull something on FERC?
Negotiated rate authority is no big thing, though. It simply bangs out a plan for the company to negotiate rates with potential customers in a fair and non-discriminatory fashion. It doesn't get them any customers. It is not an "approval" of the project. FERC's only authority over this project is ensuring its rate structure is fair. FERC has no authority over the siting and permitting of this project. Big deal, Mr. To Steal.
And, news from Missouri...
"Clean" Line has been quoting industry-influenced WHO studies as "proof" that their transmission projects will have no health effects on nearby residents. However, a well-respected, local physician has been compiling and reviewing medical research on the health risks of the proposed "Clean" Line. The Moberly Monitor did an indepth report about what Dr. Smith has found. Shocking and dangerous! Dr. Smith's findings are a MUST READ for every person in proximity to one of these "Clean" Lines.
Other news outlets have also picked up on Dr. Smith's EMF research, and the truth is spreading like wildfire! SeeABC News, the News Democrat, and about 18 other major news outlets.
"Clean" Line needs to finish watching the movie that they've been using as the basis for their arrogant expectations of the intelligence and cunning of their local opposition. They must not have watched far enough to see this scene yet:
Electric utilities… are seen by many investors as a sturdy and defensive subset of the investment grade universe. Over the next few years, however, we believe that a confluence of declining cost trends in distributed solar photovoltaic (PV) power generation and residential-scale power storage is likely to disrupt the status quo. Based on our analysis, the cost of solar + storage for residential consumers of electricity is already competitive with the price of utility grid power in Hawaii. Of the other major markets, California could follow in 2017, New York and Arizona in 2018, and many other states soon after.
We believe that solar + storage could reconfigure the organization and regulation of the electric power business over the coming decade.
We believe that sector spreads should be wider to compensate for the potential risk of regulator missteps and/or a permanent change in the utility business model.
Whether because of biases or analytical complexity, the market (and its constituent prognosticators) has tended to be late in pricing technology-driven shifts, particularly in industries that have had stable operating models (such as telcos and airlines).
It's high time for traditional electric utilities to get over their fear of the future and embrace the brave new world by making themselves relevant in this new paradigm. Regulatory campaigns to secure a revenue stream for stranded investment
will only be successful if they are based on reason and fairness, and if the utility makes an honest transition. Building more centralized infrastructure in the face of today's reality shouldn't be supported.
Likewise, distributed energy producers also need to base their regulatory arguments on reason and fairness. If your generator is going to be connected to the grid, you need to pay for it. Pretending that your net metering arrangement that may add up over time to net zero means that you shouldn't pay any of a utility's costs to maintain its infrastructure is unreasonable.
The real challenge here is putting the brakes on continued investment in centralized generation and transmission, and successful negotiation of a fair transition plan. Entrenchment and pitched battles over cost responsibility is just a waste of time. Let's get with it people... the future is here!