"Emails: Utilities Drafted Talking Points Against Gas Bans"

"Lawmakers in roughly a dozen states are using strikingly similar talking points as they unleash a wave of legislation aimed at forbidding municipalities from banning natural gas in buildings.

A Pennsylvania legislator wants to forbid municipalities from restricting gas hookups because he says it's fossil fuel discrimination. In Georgia, the sponsor of similar legislation said it would protect "freedom of choice." The leader of a Texas bill says, "If a citizen wants to have gas in their home they can."

That's no coincidence.

Documents obtained by E&E News show how the natural gas industry has honed a unified message as it rushes to block efforts in a small but growing number of cities that seek to limit gas consumption in buildings.

Talking points, crafted by a consortium of gas utilities, encourage energy companies and their allies to extol the dangers of limiting gas hookups. They argue such measures threaten to lock homeowners and businesses into costly energy options and stress the importance of fuel diversity. They also tout the environmental benefits of gas, which has elbowed out coal in the power sector and helped reduce carbon emissions."

Benjamin Storrow reports for E&E News June 1, 2021.

Source: E&E News, 06/02/2021