Library filed under Energy Policy from Colorado
The U.S. gets about 4 percent of its electricity from wind and solar power. The Clean Power Plan proposes increasing that proportion to 28 percent by 2030. A study of electric cost versus installed renewable capacity published by wattsupwiththat.com projects such an increase would actually amount to a quadrupling of consumer energy costs throughout the next 15 years, in many cases, further burdening those who are already struggling.
The bill could face its final vote in the Republican-controlled Senate as early as Wednesday, when the measure is likely to move to the House. But the legislation faces a bumpy road in the Democratic-controlled House.
Denver Colorado Republicans want to roll back the state's renewable energy mandates, and with greater numbers in the state Legislature this year — along with falling energy prices — party leaders are feeling more confident about their chances.
In the future, the wind industry should expect that in-state preferences and distributed generation requirements will be the focus of Commerce Clause attacks. Although these provisions can be justified. the strict standard of review applied to discrimination among states will create more risk for these provisions.
Colorado electricity prices rose 5 percent during the first 10 months of 2013 while U.S. prices rose just 2 percent during that same span. These price increases are predictable, indeed inevitable, when government forces consumers to purchase ever-increasing amounts of expensive renewable power.
Colorado's Democrats aren't willing to scrap a plan to increase renewable energy requirements for rural electricity providers. But they insist they're ready to talk about revising the proposal that has sparked sharp opposition in pockets of the state.
Republicans are seeking to roll back a new law requiring rural electricity providers to draw 20 percent of its energy from renewable sources by the year 2020.
The $1 billion figure covers the cost of new wind farms, natural gas power plants to provide power when the wind isn't blow and transmission lines, Dave Lock, Tri-State's senior manager for government relations told a new committee Wednesday. ...Colorado Attorney General John Suthers, said that "in a perfect world" the committee would have been convened to reach consensus on the issues a year ago.
The secessionist movement is the result of a growing urban-rural divide, which was exacerbated after this year's legislation session where lawmakers raised renewable energy standards for rural electric co-ops, floated bills increasing regulations on oil and gas, and passed sweeping gun control.
Rural Colorado already is doing its part to develop renewable resources and diversify our state's energy portfolio. With a veto of SB 252, Gov. Hickenlooper can give that substantial effort a chance to yield dividends-while also ensuring rural ratepayers are able to afford their utility bills.
Farmers and rural homeowners in Northern Colorado on Wednesday added their voices to a statewide chorus calling on Gov. Hickenlooper to veto a bill certain to raise their electric bills.
Hickenlooper said Thursday he will meet with executives from Tri-State Generation and Transmission, which provides power to 18 rural electric co-ops and is one of the two entities targeted by SB 252 (the other is the Intermountain Rural Electric Association). Tri-State executives claim the bill will cost the co-ops at least $2 billion to implement.
House Republicans accused Democrats of waging war on rural Colorado when legislators voted Tuesday to increase the renewable-energy mandate for electricity cooperatives. ...The bill passed 37-27, with all Democrats in favor and all Republicans against.
Renewable energy may be a popular catch phrase along Colorado's urban Front Range, but it has turned into fighting words across much of rural Colorado. Not because rural communities are against it, to the extent it makes economic sense, but because they're about to be force-fed an overdose by state Senate President John Morse, D-Colorado Springs.
"This would just be terrible for the dairies around here," said Weld County Commissioner and Platteville-area farmer Doug Rademacher, who added that Weld County's five-member Board of County Commissioners has spoken out against Senate Bill 252. "It would really be disastrous for all of ag. A farmer told me the other day this could increase his electricity costs for (groundwater) pumping by about $8,000 per month."
It is sad in these rough economic times that our single-party Colorado state government would impose a law that has the same effect as a tax increase on its people by passing expensive legislation cleverly introduced under the cover of environmental benefit. This just does not make common sense.
"You're not promoting Colorado jobs. You're promoting jobs in other states where you can buy power to meet the mandate," Mathers said. "This bill provides no advantage to businesses in Colorado or promoting our economy." Perhaps the greatest injustice, Grobe said, is the fact hydroelectric power is absent among the bill's list of approved sources of renewable energy.
"This is a leap to family insolvency... this is environmental bullying," King said. He noted that state-owned facilities pay $5.6 million per year for electricity to the rural co-ops, and SB 252 will increase their electric bills. "Where's the fiscal note?" he asked repeatedly. And why wasn't Tri-State and IREA invited to the table when the bill was being drafted? he asked. "Just because you have the power to do something doesn't mean you should do it," referring to the Democratic majority in both chambers and the governor's mansion.
Kent Singer of the Colorado Rural Electric Association said the co-ops serve 70 percent of the state's land mass but only 25 percent of the state's population, which he called "light density" and which means that costs are spread out over a much smaller customer base.
A Democratic bill to boost the renewable energy standard in rural Colorado is being rushed through the legislature. Its sponsors should slow down and consider making it less onerous. ...Because they weren't involved in drafting the bill, Tri-State quickly calculated it would cost them between $2 billion and $4 billion to meet the new standard.