Did you know? In New York outraged customers of Avangrid owned utilities RG&E and NYSEG have come forward in droves to call for a public utility after spending hours on the phone dealing with billing errors that caused extreme stress and hardship.
At Thursday evening's webinar a representative of Metro Justice, a social advocacy group in New York that is advocating for energy justice will help illuminate the issues that New York Avangrid customers have experienced.
In recent articles PNM characterized New Energy Economy's opposition to the PNM Avangrid merger as a smear campaign based on isolated and temporary billing issues in Maine, but evidence shows that where Avangrid operates, customer service has suffered. Since the last merger hearing we uncovered reports from Scottish Power, New York, and Connecticut where customers (and even non-customers!) have faced nightmares dealing with billing issues, illegal and cruel collection practices and rising rates.
At the webinar our friend Seth Berry, former Maine House Speaker and co-founder of Our Power will update us on Maine's fight to establish energy democracy and protect energy consumers from Avangrid in Maine, and our own former PRC Commissioner, Joseph Maestas, will answer questions about why the PRC made its unanimous decision to oppose the merger in 2021.
We know that our readers care deeply about climate action, and some in the environmental community support the PNM Avangrid merger because they believe that only an international conglomerate like Avangrid parent company, Iberdrola, will have the resources and know-how to make the transition to clean energy at the speed necessary, but unfortunately our research uncovered the pitfalls of this neo-liberal approach to the transition we need. This report from Brown University researchers finding Avangrid the worst offender among corporate lobbyists opposing climate action behind the scenes in Connecticut, and this article detailing how front groups funded by Avangrid owned utilities have used misinformation to block climate action in New York. In fact the largest obstacle to a renewable energy transition is the private utility and fossil fuel industry lobby, and regulatory roadblocks to the expansion and modernization of the national transmission grid. The proof is in the pudding - we know that the communities that have reached 100% renewable energy goals are overwhelmingly publicly owned.
The fact remains that the for-profit electric monopoly model is not compatible with the scale of energy transition that we need. We need honest and courageous local political actors dedicated to conservation, 100% renewable energy, money repurposed back into the health and welfare of our communities and a commitment to actions conducive to life rather than our current circumstance: an extractive economy that privatizes extreme profit and exacerbates income inequality, bulldozes mama Earth, poisons the air and waterways, and generally causes degeneration and depression. Our job is to love and learn from nature, not destroy it. Our job is to prevent more suffering, not be dazzled and deceived by its 3-green leaf veil. Avangrid's Pedro Azagra Blazquez stated: "we are going to invest $14.6 billion, mainly in our regulated business. More than $4 billion of that is the equity purchase of PNM and almost $2 billion of that is the capex that PNM will incur in the years ’23, ’24, and ’25, depending on when we were to close that."
Who do you think will pay Avangrid back those billions, with interest? Us. If we allow Avangrid to come to NM our rates will skyrocket. Believe them.
Mariel will join the panel on Thursday to define the roadmap we are following to oppose this corporate takeover of our energy future and transition to 100% renewables, energy democracy and justice for New Mexico ratepayers.
Register today to hear from these regulators and activists with direct knowledge and experience of Avangrid's record.
And now please send to three of your friends and let them know you'll be there!