WASHINGTON, DC – “I find it to be particularly hypocritical that the CEO of a corporation that is the nation’s largest nuclear generator and that burns very little coal would make a show publicly supporting legislation to cap carbon dioxide, said Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Chairman of the Environment & Public Works Committee. The harsh criticism was in response to comments made regarding climate change by Exelon Corporation Chief Executive Officer John Rowe at a conference today on climate change. The conference, entitled “U.S. Climate Policy: Toward a Sensible Center” was sponsored by the Pew Center on Global Climate Change and the Brookings Institution. Featured speakers include Rowe, Senators John McCain and Joe Lieberman, representatives of the Bush Administration, and several other participants. At the conference Mr. Rowe reportedly discussed his company’s belief that “climate change is inescapable” and that “carbon is a pollutant.” In addition Rowe offered support for carbon dioxide caps that are incorporated in S.139, the McCain-Lieberman climate change bill, and S.843, the Carper Clean Air Bill. Although he seemingly softened his company’s position by saying that the carbon caps would have to be consistent with continued operation of most coal-fired power plants, which presumably would keep electricity rates low. But the words ring hollow. Several studies show mandatory carbon caps would cause severe harm to the national economy, cause devastating job losses, and would drastically increase home electricity costs – especially to low and fixed income Americans. Moreover, a study by the renowned Charles River Associates released this month shows that the McCain-Lieberman approach would eliminate 57 - 73 percent of the coal produced in this country for generating electricity. Clearly, the legislation Mr. Rowe extols violates his stated requirement that it not devastate coal-fired power. “What makes Mr. Rowe’s comments so hypocritical and misleading is that, not only does Exelon generate almost half of its electricity from nuclear plants, but, as I understand it, less than 20 percent of its generation is coal-fired, far less than the national average,” Senator Inhofe said. “Since nuclear plants do not emit carbon dioxide, his company would get a huge windfall subsidized by his coal-burning competitors,” he added. “The science on climate change is certainly not settled and if anything of a consensus exists among thousands of scientists, it is that McCain-Lieberman will have virtually no impact on climate.”