Articles filed under Energy Policy
Dover, Del. - When President Barack Obama announced March 31 he had authorized plans to move forward with oil and natural gas exploration off the Atlantic coast, he touted it as a way to responsibly and carefully put the country on track to using less foreign oil.
Governor Dave Heineman has signed into law a bill he says will lift Nebraska into the major leagues of wind power among US states by ending a public monopoly over its generation. "This legislation marks the beginning of accelerated wind energy development in Nebraska," says Heineman, with the law to take effect in mid-July.
The Government of Ontario recently signed a $7-billion no-bid contract with two Korean companies to supply wind and solar power to the province. Officials claim the backroom deal will boost "green" industry and job creation. But it's hard to fathom how the additional employment can possibly be beneficial when each new manufacturing job will cost taxpayers a whopping $303,472. Nor do dramatic increases in electricity rates constitute much of a bargain.
Indiana consumers are getting few benefits from wind-power energy produced here because most is being shipped out of state, a new report says. Indiana saw a 700 percent increase in total wind-generated power in 2009, an increase second only to Utah, according to the U.S. Wind Industry Annual Market Report.
Nebraskans may begin seeing turbines on the skyline within 12 to 18 months as private companies begin using a new state law Gov. Dave Heineman will sign on Monday. ...Senators gave final approval Friday to the bill (LB1048) intended to attract wind-energy companies that would export energy from the state.
The world is littered with cautionary tales about subsidized renewables and overblown promises. Spain went wild on solar, and set off a speculative boom. Inefficient, poorly designed plants popped up everywhere. The lavish subsidies inflated costs. When Spain plunged into recession, the subsidies were ratcheted back, and the industry collapsed. Wind economics are shaky, too.
State lawmakers have determined that major industrial developments, including wind farms, warrant government scrutiny because of potential impacts beyond the land where they're located, be it private, state or federal. That's a sound policy. And because Wyoming's abundant wildlife is treasured by the state's people, it's appropriate that our wildlife management agency have a say in projects that could harm that valuable resource.
What hasn't received national attention is the stunning taxpayer subsidized profits the developer is expecting to reap from the project. A study by the Massachusetts based Beacon Hill Institute found that the proposed $1 billion dollars in subsidies from the project would contribute to a nearly 25% return on equity by investors - more than twice the average historical for return for all corporations. Add taxpayers to that list of groups opposed to the project.
The Obama administration thinks Sen. Chuck Schumer can't see the wind farms for the turbines. The New York Democrat doesn't want taxpayer funds spent to ship jobs to China. The disagreement between the two camps stems from Schumer's insistence that money from the $787 billion stimulus bill should not subsidize wind energy plants in the U.S. if they create more jobs in other countries than they do here.
Green campaigner Jonathon Porritt has slammed the "elitist" mentality of middle-class people protesting against wind turbines, which he believes is hampering the UK's chance to tackle unemployment with low-carbon jobs. ...Mr Porritt said politicians needed to do a better job of persuading people that the low-carbon economy would create wealth and employment.
Nebraska lawmakers have given second-round approval to changes designed to lure wind-energy companies that would export the energy from the state. The bill (LB1048) would allow the Nebraska Power Review Board to approve wind-energy operations designed to export energy.
ACHP states, "The historic properties affected by the Project are significant, extensive, and closely interrelated. The Project will adversely affect 34 historic properties including 16 historic districts and 12 individually 2 significant historic properties on Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, and Nantucket Island, and six properties of religious and cultural significance to tribes, including Nantucket Sound itself.
The rush to plug green energy sources into Ontario's electricity system has produced an ad hoc approach to choosing generating systems "that will unnecessarily increase the cost of electricity," says the former head of the province's power planning agency. ...In an article in this month's Journal of Policy Engagement, Carr questions whether the province's push for green technology will really produce cleaner energy at a cost that makes sense.
Detractors of offshore wind power have long pointed out that the wind doesn't always blow very hard, even over the high seas, which makes it a somewhat undependable way to keep the lights on. But a team of University of Delaware researchers say they've quantified a way to make that less of a problem -- and reduce the need to develop costly backup power plants on land or dip into the expensive peak-period electricity market when winds are limp.
One of the best-kept secrets of British politics - although it is there for all to see on a Government website - is the cost of what is by far the most expensive piece of legislation ever put through Parliament. Every year between now and 2050, acccording to Ed Miliband's Department for Energy and Climate Change (Decc), the Climate Change Act is to cost us all up to £18.3 billion - £760 for every household in the country - as we reduce our carbon emissions by 80 per cent.
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.
The large energy companies that dominate the wind-power market fear the feed-in tariff that was introduced today for domestic rooftop generation could be a "trojan horse" that might endanger the wider green energy sector. RenewableUK, the former British Wind Energy Association, warned that a debate around whether the feed-in tariff could be expanded as a subsidy regime for larger schemes was "extremely unhelpful".
The Spanish wind industry is potentially in a state of flux following reports the government is planning to end the sector's production incentive in a cost cutting exercise. Following the industry minister's reported intention of ending the sector's wind production incentive to save the electricity system money, the Spanish wind industry is containing its outrage, pending clarification.
Exelon Corp. is using its clout in Springfield to fight the Illinois wind energy industry - and winning. Opposition by the Chicago-based nuclear power giant has killed legislation to extend an expiring state law that gives preference to Illinois green energy projects as part of the state's push to purchase more electricity from renewable sources like wind and solar.
The growing interest in wind farms stems from the government's subsidy system. A typical three-megawatt turbine will generate about £670,000 income a year, of which £350,000 comes in subsidies. Since the machines cost £2-3m and have a lifetime of about 25 years, the profits are considerable, even after running costs are deducted. ...Critics say it is ironic that the Renewables Obligation certificate (Roc) scheme was created by a Labour government but is handing large profits to investors and country landowners.