Electric utility companies are responsible for about 37% of the United States energy-related carbon dioxide emissions. While that percentage has decreased in recent years, fossil fuels continue to dominate how utilities produce electricity, and these companies, along with their trade associations, continue to hold significant influence within the country’s political process. The electric utility industry has spent heavily to influence elections, lobbied to weaken clean air and water safeguards, invested in coal and gas-fired power plants instead of cleaner options, waged a war against distributed solar energy, and even funded climate change denial.
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