Calif.’s energy regulators can learn lesson from Brexit decision

Calif.’s energy regulators can learn lesson from Brexit decision

Amid growing demand for electricity and Pacific Gas & Electric Co.’s recent decision to shut down its Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant, California energy regulators can learn a lesson from Britain’s decision to leave the European Union (Brexit vote),

PG&E announced last week that its Diablo Canyon facility, California’s last operating nuclear power plant, would stop operating once its existing license expires in 2025. More shocking was the “negotiated proposal” between PG&E and environmental groups, with no mention of the regulators appointed to make sure that consumers get efficient and economical electricity.

It is an open secret that the environmental groups that force such closures are not true representatives of the California voters. But, these unelected environmental groups, with the support of their bureaucratic allies in different government agencies, continue to dictate energy policies.

Referring to the “negotiated proposal,” the Wall Street Journal said, “The agreement wades deeply into intricate energy procurement, environmental and rate-setting matters that are normally the exclusive jurisdiction of state agencies.”

Forcing its tough energy efficiency standards on member states, the EU triggered public outcry in Britain when it banned high powered kettles, toasters and vacuum cleaners with motors above 1600 watts. Many Britons severely criticized the bans, and accused the EU of interfering with Britons personal lives. Eventually, Britons decided to exit.

Analysts say California should learn a lesion from the Brexit decision -- too much regulation results in referendums to overturn it. Thus, authorities should ensure that the free market reigns, without diktat by bureaucrats.