Utilities Divided as Exelon Quits Chamber Over Climate Change

By Joe Walsh on September 29, 2009

Exelon became the latest utility to leave the US Chamber of Commerce over the business group’s opposition to House climate change legislation. California’s Pacific Gas and Electric announced its decision to leave the Chamber in the climate change/cap-and-trade flap last week, quickly followed by New Mexico’s PNM Resources.

The House Waxman-Markey bill has drawn criticism for being too friendly to utility companies, who would be handed a large percentage of the carbon credit allowances created. That criticism has come not only from environmental advocates who are concerned that free allowances will undermine the value of a cap, but also from other business interests who see the credits creating a potential windfall for utilities - especially those who already generate much of their power from cleaner fuels.

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