Articles filed under Energy Policy from Ohio
Government requirements for the use of solar, wind and other forms of renewable energy by Ohio power companies would be suspended indefinitely under recommendations released Wednesday by a legislative panel. The Energy Mandates Study Committee's report cites legal uncertainty and a need for "greater clarity" surrounding proposed federal clean power rules among reasons for the recommendation.
Ohio’s clean-energy benchmarks are more likely to be reduced than repealed, according to the leaders of a special legislative panel that has been studying the topic. The Energy Mandates Study Committee held its final meeting on Monday, and its members have until Sept. 30 to deliver recommendations to Ohio House and Senate leaders.
A research group says a new law freezing the state’s green-energy standards has led to significant declines in the wind and solar industry in Ohio. But Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler says the study is getting some blow back from a key backer of that law.
Ohio’s two-year timeout on its mandate that utilities get more of their power from renewable and advanced technology sources has dampened investment in what were once booming solar and wind industries in the state, according to a study released Tuesday.
The use of renewable energy in manufacturing, meanwhile, hovers at 8% to 9%, and it’s not guaranteed to soar. A June study by the International Renewable Energy Agency found that the figure could grow to more than a quarter by 2030, or a third if some form of carbon pricing takes effect—or, under current deployment plans and government policies, it could stagnate at 10%.
He noted that critics of the energy standards have two years to come up with an alternative. “If they don’t give us something that works, we go back to the old standards,” he said. He defended the increased setback restrictions on wind turbines by saying, “Private property rights are important. People choose to live somewhere. You just don’t go in there and disrupt their life.”
"A difference between Ohio and Michigan is that wind turbine regulations are set at the state level in Ohio but locally in Michigan," Martis said. "If these kind of new regulations were put in place throughout Michigan, wind developers would face the need to negotiate directly with property owners instead of seeking out agreements with non-participating parties.
“It is not right to have the setback measured from a home – it should be from a property line,” the Auglaize Neighbors United group says on its website. “If the wind company wants to intrude on the neighbor’s property, it needs to get an easement and compensate the landowner.”
Kasich told reporters Monday that pausing phase-in of targets set in 2008 is a victory for Ohio’s economy. The old law said 25 percent of Ohio’s energy should come from alternative sources by 2025. The new law continues that goal in 2017 unless a better alternative is found. Kasich says the 25-percent figure was “without any real science behind it.”
Julie Johnson, whose rural Urbana property is in the footprint of an approved 110-turbine EverPower project in Champaign County, said she has heard that all before. The green-energy sky, she says, is not falling. “It’s always something with those people,” she said of the wind-energy companies. “If they don’t get their way, they say they’re done. And then they don’t go away. That’s why we’ve been so dogged on this every step of the way.”
Gov. John Kasich has added his signature to much-debated legislation freezing renewable energy and efficiency mandates for two years, pending a review by a new study committee.
Gov. John Kasich (R) is planning to sign the rollback legislation by the Saturday deadline, a spokesperson told the Cleveland Plain Dealer. The move comes after more than two years of fierce debate by Ohio’s industries, businesses and lawmakers over whether the requirements harm or benefit the state economy.
“We’re not canceling the original plan; we’re just freezing it for two years,” he said. “It’s not 2008 any more,” he said. “A lot has changed. If new capacity is being built in Ohio, it will be a gas-fired turbine.”
“The subsidy, market, technical and indirect cost implications of wind electricity are enormous, and driving rates up unnecessarily will cost the state billions, in addition to the possibility of losing tens of thousands of jobs in energy-intensive industries,” Stacy said.
A proposed two-year freeze on the state’s renewable energy and energy efficiency standards is headed to Gov. John Kasich’s desk after passing final legislative votes on Wednesday. The freeze will give lawmakers time to study the mandates, which critics said are unachievable.
Gov. John Kasich intends to sign a two-year freeze of Ohio's renewable energy and energy efficiency mandates, an administration spokesman said Wednesday.
The bill includes a two-year freeze on standards that apply to electricity utilities that address renewable energy and energy efficiency. It also ends a requirement that utilities purchase half of their renewable energy from within the state.
Sen. Bill Seitz, R-Cincinnati, described complaints linking the easing of Ohio’s green-energy standards to the American Legislative Exchange Council, a national conservative group, as “ridiculous.” ...The fact that so many states are exploring changes to their rules is a sign that the rules are flawed, said Mike O’Neal, president and CEO of the Kansas Chamber of Commerce.
The committee heard well over a dozen groups and individuals in favor of the freeze. Some of those speaking made it clear they just do not want wind turbine farms near them. Others, including the Ohio Chamber of Commerce and the National Federation of Independent Business, testified that the law as it now stands is costing ratepayers too much money.
The new bill would freeze Ohio’s alternative energy requirements at current levels, and create a legislative panel to determine whether any changes are needed. If no changes are made, the current rules would resume in 2017. Ohio’s senate approved the bill last week, and it now heads to the House.