Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse… and after yesterday’s Executive Order 11-04, oh my, that was pretty awful, then Dayton makes the choice of Bill Grant, Izaak Walton League, as Deputy Commissioner of Energy.

Bill Grant headed the Midwest Izaak Walton League, the “environmental” organization that through the years has given the utilities everything they want, and has received foundation grants (it is his last name after all) to promote the most reprehensible things… particularly transmission, transmission, transmission.  They intervened in the CapX 2020 Certificate of Need (PUC Docket 06-1115) in favor of the project, what more need be said?

So did Dayton make this appointment with knowledge of, or not knowing:

Settlement Agreement – ME3(Fresh Energy), Izaak Walton League, Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy, North American Water Office

$8.1 Million Wind on Wires grant from McKnight/Energy Foundation

“Wind on the Wires” website – remember, this is a subset of Walton’s, they’re on Walton’s payroll

Bill Grant – Sawmill Presentation – Promotion of Coal Gasification

And remember, Bill Grant has been on that Renewable Development Fund that gave Excelsior Energy $10 million in state money… and he’s the one who talks about “low carbon coal.”  Give me a break…

How is this appointment in the public interest?

Izaak Walton League official tapped to head state energy division

Environmentalists happy he supports renewable energy

By Leslie Brooks Suzukamo

Updated: 01/24/2011 11:12:55 PM CST

Minnesota Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman has appointed William Grant, an ardent environmentalist with the Izaak Walton League and advocate of renewable energy, as the state’s new deputy commissioner of its energy division.

Environmentalists praised the appointment as a sign that Gov. Mark Dayton wants to preserve Minnesota’s leadership role in renewable energy development.

“Bill is recognized by consumers, the energy industry and policy-makers as someone with terrific knowledge, ability and integrity,” Rothman said in a statement Monday. “He will be charged with ensuring that Minnesota’s energy needs are met while focusing on a green energy economy and jobs.”

The deputy commissioner also oversees the state’s regulated utilities and makes recommendations on rate hike requests.

Grant said his first priority will be “to maintain Minnesota’s leadership in progressive energy policies” while making sure consumers are protected.

He noted that the Minnesota House recently moved to lift the moratorium on developing more nuclear power and is looking at removing restrictions on building new coal-fired power plants, among other measures, but he declined to say what he would recommend until after he talks with the governor’s staff.

“Nobody knows Minnesota’s energy policy like Bill Grant,” said Michael Noble, executive director of the nonprofit advocacy group Fresh Energy.

“He’s got a 30-year track record in energy policy, and he’s helped put Minnesota in place as a national energy leader,” Noble said. “It’s a clear signal from the governor that he intends to make energy a key part of his vision for getting Minnesota back to work.”

The Minnesota Chamber of Commerce agreed that Grant’s division will play a key role in the growth of the state’s economy.

“Bill Grant has got enormous experience in regards to environmental policy, but to do that job well, it’s about reliability and competitive costs as much as it is about protecting the environment. You’ve got to wear at least three hats,” said Bill Blazar, a spokesman for the chamber.

Minneapolis-based Xcel Energy said, “Xcel Energy works cooperatively with all of its regulators and will continue to do so.”