USA or Alaska
The acoustical firms involved in the sound testing were unanimous, "The four investigating firms are of the opinion that enough evidence and hypotheses have been given herein to classify LFN and infrasound as a serious issue, possibly affecting the future of the industry" and "We recommend additional study on an urgent priority basis..." Scientific study is clearly needed to establish humane and appropriate turbine location setbacks from homes to protect the health and safety of exposed populations.
Then there are the green-energy giveaways that are also quickly becoming entitlements. The wind production tax credit got another one-year reprieve, thanks to Mr. Obama and GOP Senators John Thune (South Dakota) and Chuck Grassley (Iowa). This freebie for the likes of the neediest at General Electric and Siemens.
These subsidies, touted by their early sponsors 20 years ago as necessary to kick-start a green industry, do little to keep carbon dioxide, an earth-warming gas generated by combustion of fossil fuels, out of the atmosphere. And that little costs a lot - $12 billion if the subsidies are renewed for another year.
The wind lobby, fearing it could lose for a change, has suddenly changed its strategy and has sent Congress a letter, saying that it would be willing to accept a six-year phaseout of the production tax credit. But as Phil Gramm notes nearby, the wind subsidy was sold as temporary from the very beginning. Rest assured that once the six years are up, the industry will be back asking for another six.
Billions of dollars in subsidies will continue to be paid out over the next decade on existing projects even if the subsidies for projects built in the future expire. If unimpeded, the expanded use of cheap natural gas to generate electricity will raise living standards and attract millions of new industrial jobs. A vote to stop wind subsidies from being extended is, therefore, a vote for cheaper, more reliable power, higher living standards, reindustrialization and fiscal sanity.
Skeptics counter that Washington's wind subsidy and grant programs actually retard innovation and unlevel the playing field in the energy market. ..."The size of the subsidy relative to wholesale prices is distorting competitive wholesale energy markets and harming the financial integrity of other, more reliable generation."
While the three indirect and infrastructure [hidded] costs of wind have been acknowledged in research reports, they have not appeared in most generation-cost comparisons. That's because regulatory authorities have not required wind operators to pay for them, they've required consumers to pay for them instead. In an honest, transparent and accountable political system, that should not be an excuse for policymakers to ignore their impact on consumers, jobs and the economy.
At some point, Democrats need to give in on this "green jobs" pitch. Extending the subsidy is a jobs-killer. Government doesn't pick winners and losers well, yet the wind subsidy certainly picks a winner. In doing so, it also picks losers (and many more losers than winners) by transferring billions of dollars away from more-effective job producers.
America's debate on green energy is pathetic. In the past year, the two biggest green-energy issues in Congress have been whether to to strip the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of various authorities and whether to renew a crude subsidy for wind power.
This government in Washington, DC, is borrowing 42 cents out of every dollar we spend. That is why I come to the floor to point out a proposal that has been made to fleece the taxpayers out of an additional $50 billion over the next 6 years. This is a proposal that is as brazen as a mid-day bank robbery on Main Street. It is a proposal by the wind developers of America to say to the taxpayers: Please give us $50 billion or so more dollars over the next 6 years to phase out the Federal taxpayer subsidy for wind power.
In the history of American business, it's difficult to find an industry that has enjoyed more political favoritism than the wind-energy sector now enjoys.
The wind industry gets subsidies, mandates, and a de facto exemption from prosecution under some of America's oldest wildlife laws. And the wind-energy lobby is doing all it can to make sure that this favoritism is maintained.
Energy Policy: Wind and sunlight are free, but that doesn't make them cheap. This is a lesson that states such as California will learn as they push hard to cut the fossil-fuel share of electric power.
It's the taxes you can't see that may gouge you the most.
Solar and wind power advocates are fighting to renew clean energy subsidies, which expires at year's end. They argue that these technologies are worth the investment because they offset fossil fuel dependence and carbon emissions. Indeed, that's the conventional assumption of most energy researchers, government labs, and think tanks. However, there is an emerging problem with that assumption - there's no evidence to back it up.
Even with all that hidden help from generous taxpayers, wind isn’t any bargain for energy customers. ...So long as this industry's survival depends upon those preferential government handouts and regulatory mandates, two things are clear. Wind is certainly not a competitive free market source of energy, or a charity we can continue to afford.
The wind production tax credit (PTC) has created an industry that produces overpriced, intermittent power, and it will continue to produce overpriced, intermittent power so as long as there is a PTC to pay for it. Here are the top seven myths associated with the PTC.
Ronald Reagan once observed that a federal program is the closest thing to eternal life. The latest example of this reality is the production tax credit for wind power, a program scheduled to expire at the end of this year. Despite the Beltway cacophony on the fiscal cliff, sequestration, and entitlement reform, seemingly small policy issues often carry huge implications, with economic effects far greater than the narrow budget impacts might suggest.
Businesses such as Siemens and GE get to reap the rewards of success when they make smart decisions. But they should also suffer the consequences of bad decisions. If this is a profitable industry, then they will find a way to survive without massive taxpayer subsidies. If they cannot, then they and taxpayers should not be in the business.
In the lawsuit, the residents claim that the noise produced by the turbines on the 74-megawatt facility causes headaches and disturbs their sleep. Some of the residents say they have abandoned their homes because of the noise. Others are claiming that the project has hurt their property values. The key paragraph in the suit says that the defendants "failed to adequately assess the effect that the wind turbines would have on neighboring properties including..."
The credit already has been extended by Congress five times. Now, Congress is considering whether to extend it one more year, at a cost to taxpayers of more than $12 billion. If so, the many will once again pay to benefit the politically connected few. ...Our government cannot subsidize its way to the long-term economic growth the country desperately needs. The math doesn't work, nor does the flawed logic that we should continue to pay billions to build wind turbines that fail to produce power when customers most need it.
The economic inefficiency of subsidies compounds the electrical inefficiency of wind farms. The U.K. should end its 200-percent subsidies for offshore wind farms, too - and the U.S. should follow suit by ending its own wind-power boondoggles.