The EPA, Solar Panel Scams, Lowering Electric Bills, & More w/ GA Commissioner Tricia Pridemore

Growing up in a spiritually nurturing environment, I found solace in emotional support but lacked crucial life skills, particularly in financial management. The absence of a budgeting education led to challenging times, yet these moments became teachable experiences, shaping my approach to decision-making. As inflation escalates and economic challenges rise, the importance of making sound financial decisions has never been more evident. Surviving these turbulent times requires a keen understanding of personal finances and the impact of elected officials on our economic well-being.

In this article, we delve into a snippet of my conversation with GA Public Service Commissioner Tricia Pridemore, a leading figure in the energy industry. Her insights, shared as part of The Janelle King Show “Candid{ate} Conversation” series, shed light on crucial aspects like utility bills, political challenges, and strategies for navigating financial landscapes effectively.

Welcome to Candid{ate} Conversations, a unique platform for candid discussions with elected officials and individuals striving to be elected. We embark on insightful conversations that explore the challenges, aspirations, and visions of political leaders and aspiring candidates. Whether you prefer to listen to podcasts or read about our discussions, we aim to provide valuable insights into the political landscape, policies, and the people driving change in our communities and nation.

In this episode of “The Janelle King Show,” join us as we explore the strategies to conquer inflation and navigate financial challenges with ease. Learn about money-saving tips to slash expenses, reduce household costs, and enhance efficiency in your daily life.

[Below, you’ll find an edited snippet from our conversation, streamlined for clarity and ease of reading. This excerpt is taken from various parts of the discussion, not necessarily from the beginning.]


Janelle King: What you do and how it affects us is what I’m interested in discussing. I want your insight on the current issues, especially in energy and related areas. Are there specific things from the federal government that you think could impact your role as a public service commissioner?

Commissioner Pridemore: The EPA played a crucial role during the previous administration by implementing regulations without proper research, which increased costs for consumers. The most significant cost on your electricity bill, apart from usage, is the environmental tariff, covering expenses from recent EPA actions. I recently spoke to a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on Capitol Hill about these concerns, focusing on reliability and affordability, especially with the growing demand from AI, data centers, and technological advancements.

Commissioner Pridemore: Coupled with the agenda to continue to get more and more green power, I’m not opposed to Renewables.

Commissioner Pridemore: but they are not 100% of the solution their lack of dispatch ability precludes them to right now. So you have this drive for demand and…

Commissioner Pridemore: Increase capacity is on a collision course with the lack of dispatchable power and the inability to serve this increased load. Additionally, the federal government continues to implement regulations bypassing Congress, thereby bypassing elected representatives. This is done through executive orders and agency rulemaking. I urge the House Energy and Commerce Committee, comprising intelligent individuals from both sides of the aisle, to recognize that this situation is not sustainable.

Commissioner Pridemore: The collision ahead threatens the reliability and safety of the system, and importantly, it’s becoming unaffordable for people to pay their bills. This stress is pushing for cleaner, carbon-free options.

Janelle King: Yeah.

Commissioner Pridemore: Net Zero by 2030 or 2050 are great goals. We all want clean air and water. However, we must be realistic about technology limitations and the path to achieving these goals.

Janelle King: What actions can you take at the state level to address rising energy costs and federal regulations impacting Georgians?

Commissioner Pridemore: In Georgia, we benefit from being a vertically integrated state. This means we generate, transmit, and consume our own energy.

Janelle King: Okay.

Commissioner Pridemore: We handle distribution ourselves. When discussing Grid challenges in the Northeast, we refer to ISO New England. Similarly, issues with the Texas grid after winter storm Yuri involve ERCOT. These organizations are often in the news. In Georgia, we have an integrated system across 41 electric coops EMC.

Commissioner Pridemore: We represent 47 municipal electric providers and Georgia Power, prioritizing Georgia’s interests. Our focus is on generating power based on demand and using advanced transmission technology for a secure and efficient grid. We distribute Renewable Power from South Georgia to load centers like Atlanta, Savannah, and Augusta.

Commissioner Pridemore: It’s an interesting approach that I often tell the story when I first became a commissioner. I’m going on my seventh year. I went to one of our national meetings, and commissioners came up to me and said, ‘You have no idea how special it is what you have. But you’ll figure it out. And your responsibility here is to protect it

Commissioner Pridemore: Protect what you have, grow cautiously, and heed seasoned regulators’ advice about federal encroachments and states lacking reliability. Their wisdom remains true years later.

Janelle King: I appreciate that you identify yourself as a regulator, a role that many people may not know about but is crucial to understand.

Janelle King: So, I like that you use that because it gives us an understanding of the role with the responsibilities all at the same time. That being said, I want to delve into the role a little bit more. What’s the best way for me as a constituent to explain your role to someone?

Commissioner Pridemore: So on the energy side…

I hope you’ve enjoyed this snippet of my discussion with Comm’r Pridemore. To hear the entire interview, please click on the link below.

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