Library filed under Energy Policy from Ohio
Sen. Bill Seitz, R-Cincinnati, said he hopes to introduce a bill overhauling the 2008 law as soon as the end of the month. "It behooves any wise person to check in. No one I know of stays with an 18-year plan and doesn't make suitable changes to the plan when market conditions change."
When the state's renewable energy mandate was enacted five years ago, both demand and prices for electricity were expected to rise, said Ohio Sen. Bill Seitz, chairman of the Ohio Senate Public Utilities Committee that is holding hearings this month on the state's renewable energy requirement. But since then, large deposits of natural gas in shale have kept energy prices down, Seitz said, and the additional demand hasn't materialized.
Ohio's benchmarks for renewable energy and energy efficiency are getting a five-year checkup that some defenders fear will turn into an amputation. An Ohio Senate panel began hearings last week to examine the rules and figure out whether there is a way to address some businesses' concerns that the mandates are too costly.
FirstEnergy, the publicly traded utility based in Akron, pushed lawmakers at the end of 2012 to freeze energy efficiency standards, according to The Columbus Dispatch. The company previously has argued that mandates on utilities increase costs for consumers. Environmental groups and green-energy proponents don't like talk of tinkering with the standards.
If approved by the House of Representatives next week as expected, the legislation would encourage public colleges and other institutions to build heating and power plants fired by natural gas and get credit for them as renewable energy ...Those credits now go to help finance wind farms.
Combined heat and power (CHP), also known as cogeneration, and waste heat from industrial processes would be qualified as renewable resources and be given equal footing with traditional green energy sources like wind and solar.
"It is my strong conviction that the choice of energy supply should come from the demands of the free market, and not from policymakers and environmental lobbyists," said Sen. Kris Jordan, R-Powell, sponsor of the bill that would eliminate the requirement for use of renewable-energy sources such as wind and solar.
Without government to subsidize green energy enough to make it competitive -- or, in the case of states with renewable portfolio standards, to make green energy a requirement, whether it's competitive or not -- there would be no market for it. ...Just ask the guys at Solyndra. They'll take the Fifth Amendment, but that doesn't stop you from asking.
The legislation, Senate Bill 216, proposes to repeal Ohio's alternative energy portfolio standard (AEPS). The current AEPS, enacted in May 2008 under then-Gov. Ted Strickland, contains two separate resource requirements, both of which would be revoked if Jordan's bill were to become law.
Earlier this month, Sen. Kris Jordan, R-Powell, introduced a bill to repeal those standards. "They're trying to get me to say we don't need renewables here. Of course, we need renewables," Kasich said during an impassioned speech to kick off the summit, which is designed to help his administration craft an all-inclusive energy policy for the state.
"Ohioans deserve our best efforts to lower energy costs for all consumers, and a positive environment for job creators to move Ohio's economy forward, and this bill does just that." State clean energy supporters pointed out that energy efficiency is the best way to cut pollution.
Three years after legislators voted nearly unanimously to require Ohio's power companies to meet new green-energy standards, at least a few Republicans say it's time to repeal the rules to save jobs and avoid higher electricity costs. Environmental groups are sharply criticizing the plan.
The alternative energy plan, adopted in 2008, calls on Ohio utilities to get 12 1/2 percent of their energy by 2025 from advanced, renewable energy such as wind, solar and biomass. Half must be produced in Ohio. The standards are ''effectively a hidden tax passed on to consumers and businesses.''
"Ohio law and public policy encourage consumer-produced power through renewable resources such as wind and solar," said Consumer's Counsel Janine Migden-Ostrander. "According to several consumers and supporting documents, the utility has erected obstacles that fail to comply with the law." One of those obstacles has been requiring the customer to purchase a new meter.
Putnam County Commissioners are currently looking at possibly approving tax abatements for a renewable energy corporation in Van Buren Township after Governor Ted Strickland signed Senate Bill 232 Thursday evening. Putnam County Commissioners have 30 days since the signing to confirm the new tax structure.
Because of the state's efforts to enhance renewable energy in Ohio, at least seven projects are presently in the works around the "Buckeye State." Three of the proposals seek to develop wind farms across the Van Wert/Paulding county line.
The stench instantly assaulted the senses, almost compelling a visitor to bolt from the bio-energy research lab.
Ohio officials outlined plans this week to put Lake Erie, the shallowest of the Great Lakes, at the forefront of offshore wind-power development. Gov. Ted Strickland and U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown joined industry and education leaders to detail tax-cut and regulatory measures to jump-start wind-power development on Lake Erie. The lake's comparative shallowness is seen as an advantage for erecting towers to produce wind power.
Ohio Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown is seeing red because a green energy grant program that funds new wind turbines doesn't require their construction with American parts. He wants to suspend the program until Congress imposes "Buy American" restrictions. Brown's stance puts him at odds not only with the Obama administration, but with his friend and political ally, Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland, who backs domestic wind turbine manufacturing but doesn't want to ignore the hundreds of Ohio jobs that could be created by building and operating wind farms.
While Ohio Governor Ted Strickland touted elimination of tangible personal property taxes for wind and solar companies Tuesday, that prospect didn't sit well with representatives of the entities that stand to lose up to $1.4 million in first-year tax revenue if the Buckeye Wind project gains approval to construct 70 turbines in Champaign County from the Ohio Power Siting Board this year.