In the spring of 2013, President Obama announced a goal of a 17 percent reduction in U.S. greenhouse gas emissions below 2005 by 2020. His memorandum directs the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to issue proposed and final carbon pollution standards and regulations for existing power plans using the Clean Air Act under the following schedule:
¿ Proposed guidelines by June 1, 2014
¿ Final guidelines by June 1, 2015
¿ State plans submitted by states to EPA by June 30, 2016
PNM has played an active role in advocating for federal climate change legislation and has taken actions at the local level to reduce the carbon emissions associated with its energy production. We supported New Mexico's Renewable Energy Act, and have made a significant commitment to adding renewable energy to our system since 2003. That's when PNM brought the 200 megawatt New Mexico Wind Energy Center online (prior to any state renewable requirements). By 2015, PNM wind, solar and geothermal resources will provide the equivalent amount of energy to power approximately 132,000 homes and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 915,000 metric tons ¿ the equivalent of taking 191,000 cars off the road annually.
In addition, PNM also played a major role in supporting New Mexico's energy efficiency legislation, resulting in the passage of the Efficient Use of Energy Act, which provided for gas and electric utilities to offer energy efficiency to its customers. Shortly after the act passed in 2007, PNM was the first utility in the state to introduce a suite of electric energy efficiency programs that have provided tremendous results in energy and cost savings and environmental benefits. Since 2007, PNM residential and business customers have saved enough energy to serve more than 95,000 homes and earned more than $27 million in customer rebates. These programs have also saved an estimated 353,674 metric tons of CO2.
To comply with regional haze regulations and to better position San Juan Generating Station near Farmington to meet future greenhouse gas regulations, PNM Resources has committed to an agreement with the State of New Mexico and EPA to close two of four coal-fired electricity generating units by the end of 2017. This will effectively help to reduce the company's greenhouse gas emissions to at least 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020. PNM is further committed to actively engaging in the state and federal policy, to ensure that future policies are efficient, environmentally effective and affordable.
PNM Resources actively advocates for sound climate policy on its own and through alliances, including the Edison Electric Institute, the Generators for Clean Air, and the Coalition for Innovative Climate Solutions.