Shortly following the end of the legislative session, RENEW Wisconsin wrote to Governor Jim Doyle asking him to veto Senate Bill 273, which would allow “plasma gasification” of municipal wastes to generate electricity. RENEW sought the veto because the bill would allow the electricity to be called renewable and count toward the renewable energy requirements placed on Wisconsin utilities.

Now several other organizations, including RENEW, fleshed out the orginal veto request with a second letter:

We, the undersigned businesses and organizations, urge you to veto SB 273, which would undermine Wisconsin’s current renewable energy standards under Act 141. Signing this bill will result in less renewable solar, wind and biomass energy for Wisconsin at a time when our economy and our environment desperately need more, not less, of these technologies to decrease our dependence on dirty fossil fuels.

New development companies across the country are attempting to define gasification facilities as “green” renewable energy. Yet this technology, a glorified form of incineration that is burdened with many of the same cost and environmental drawbacks, has never been successfully deployed anywhere in this country. Developers are seeking tax incentives, grants and renewable energy credits at the expense of recycling and true renewable energy programs.

Please end your tenure as Governor by vetoing the bill that will undermine Wisconsin’s efforts to become a leader on genuine renewable energy. The benefits of doing so will be recognized for years to come.

The letter came from the Sierra Club – John Muir Chapter * Waukesha Environmental Action League * Midwest Environmental Advocates * Advocates for Renewable Energy * Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters * Clean Wisconsin * Wisconsin Environment * Citizens Utility Board * RENEW WI * Physicians for Social Responsibility * Wisconsin Network for Peace and Justice.

Click here for a description of SB 273, as amended.