Illinois Electric Cooperative Scares Ratepayers Into Joining Oil Rallies Against Clean Energy Reform

An electric utility in southern Illinois is frightening thousands of its customers by spreading misinformation about President Obama’s clean energy reform agenda. The Wayne-White Counties Electric Cooperative has joined the American Petroleum Institute’s “Energy Citizens” propaganda campaign, telling its members to oppose the American Clean Energy and Security Act. Wayne-White is even “organizing a bus trip” to the state capital to join an API rally on September 1:

Wayne-White encourages concerned citizens to participate in the free bus trip and rally in Springfield. The co-op recently mailed out nearly 10,000 informational letters and signature forms to enable concerned citizens to help themselves by speaking out and opposing this issue. As of Monday, more than 4,000 postcards had been returned to the co-op office which will be hand-delivered to Burris and Durbin at their Springfield offices, the Wayne-White news release said.

Wayne-White’s CEO Daryl Donjon has claimed that the legislation, which would spur a clean-energy economy by capping pollution and supporting renewable energy and efficiency, “is an unfair tax to the Midwest and would raise electric rates by 80 percent.” In the letter sent to Wayne-White’s captive audience, the utility claims “Cap & Trade” will “lead to the transfer of wealth from the midwestern states to the coastal states” and is “scary.”

Donjon is repeating the fearmongering about clean energy reform promoted by conservatives from Newt Gingrich to Wayne-White representative John Shimkus (R-IL), who have been repeatedly debunked. In reality, the EPA has found that the Waxman-Markey American Clean Energy and Security Act would lower electricity bills, not raise them.


Scientific models project that Illinois is one of the top ten states most at risk of rising temperatures due to global warming in the coming decades — science that Daryl Donjon rejects.