Library filed under Impact on Economy
Start with a suite of renewable-energy policies that keep ratcheting up electricity costs. The so-called renewables obligation, which requires utilities to buy a steadily increasing share of their power from trendy green sources such as solar and wind, is driving up wholesale power prices. So is the feed-in tariff, which forces utilities to pay a minimum rate for renewable electricity that’s higher than the cost of fossil-fuel-fired generation.
Maybe, just maybe, some Mainers are becoming less inclined to fall in line and accept the state’s excessively generous standards for wind development. The Fort Fairfield Town Council recently approved a wind ordinance requiring turbine siting of one mile from property lines of non-participating property owners, rather than acceding to the state model — written by the wind industry — requiring setback of only 150 percent of the height of the turbine.
A new study from Utah State University found that, as of 2013, Michigan’s renewable energy mandate, enacted in 2008, has cost families and businesses here a bundle: $15.1 billion overall, or $3,830 per family, compared to what we would have experienced without the mandate.
In the wee hours of the morning on Sunday, the mighty state of Texas was asleep. The honky-tonks in Austin were shuttered, the air-conditioned office towers of Houston were powered down, and the wind whistled through the dogwood trees and live oaks on the gracious lawns of Preston Hollow. Out in the desolate flats of West Texas, the same wind was turning hundreds of wind turbines, producing tons of electricity at a time when comparatively little supply was needed.
RIMA’s objection to the Deepwater Wind project is the pricing mechanism that is in place and how that was established. The overall cost for electricity generated by Deepwater Wind is about four to five times that of natural gas and other renewable sources ...The excess, above-market cost to ratepayers will be about $497 million over 20 years (not including investment tax credits, the cost for the oversize cable, and other direct projects costs).
As many as 73% of manufacturers want to see legislative reform of the UK's current environmental and climate change policies, according to a new survey by the manufacturers organisation EEF. Respondents claimed that existing regulations are harming their international competitiveness.
To put an end to the often unexpected power flows from Germany — so-called loop flows — the countries are taking the matter into their own hands. Concerned about the stability of their own grids, additional costs and the ability to export their own power, the Czechs, for example, are installing devices to block the power from 2016 onwards.
Sardinian prosecutor Mauro Mura warned last year of mafia infiltration in the sector, flagging up instances of renewable energy plants which had profited hugely from subsidies open exclusively to farmers, while "not producing any agricultural goods at all".
“We can’t have a situation where industry has a blank check, and that check is paid for by people’s bills”
Under the scheme, everyone – from a household who decided to put a solar panel on the roof to the developer of an offshore wind farm – was guaranteed a premium on top of the market price for electricity, to help encourage the development of renewables. ...due to a decline in the wholesale price of oil and gas, as well as higher than expected installation of home solar panels, this budget of £7.6bn per year has already been busted by more than 20 per cent.
This new research conducted by Utah State University examines the true costs of wind power. The authors conclude that wind energy is roughly 48% more expensive than the industry’s official estimates. The executive summary of the report is provided below. The full report can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
“Our decision not to initiate an enforcement action means that Mr. Riggs may himself bring an enforcement action against the Rhode Island Commission in the appropriate court,” commissioners wrote.
Australian Federal Senator John Madigan delivered this powerful speech before the Senate during its deliberation of Renewable Energy (Electricity) Amendment Bill 2015, a bill that would lower Australia's national target for renewables. In his speech he cites the high cost of supporting the wind industry and the hypocrisy of claims that wind energy lowers electricity rates. His speech is provided in full below and can be accessed at the links on this page.
But at the same time, the flood of solar and wind energy on the grid has caused wholesale electricity prices to collapse — all while retail rates have skyrocketed. But the collapse in wholesale prices are cutting into the profitability of coal and gas plant operators that don’t get the generous subsidies that green energy does.
A German energy industry association survey found that 53% of investors in power plants scheduled to come online in the next decade had frozen their involvement in the projects because of political uncertainty. “If politicians carry on as they do now then there will be no new, modern power stations. There are no incentives whatsoever for investments, despite politicians emphasising all the time that they aim to change this. It is also likely that further closures will follow.”
Matthew Beaton, the new state energy secretary, ...says he wouldn’t make that investment today. “I don’t know if, given the uncertainty of Cape Wind at that time, and the overall question marks of offshore wind development, is a $100-plus million investment the appropriate use of those funds? Could we have used those monies in a more well-suited manner?”
On the plus side, the $130 million investment means the PUD satisfies state renewable energy requirements through 2027 under current law. But there’s the tiny matter of wind farms running a $1 million-per-month loss, with no profits projected anytime soon, thanks to a depressed market for the power. It’s like owning a rental home in an area with too many rentals and not enough renters and having to lease for a price that doesn’t cover your costs.
German taxpayers could end up spending billions of euros to help close the country's nuclear plants as current funding plans involving utilities risk falling short, a report commissioned by the government and seen by Reuters showed on Friday.
Overall on energy, “we have much higher political costs in Europe,” Beyrer said, citing renewable-energy policies that cause “market distortion” and environmental efforts that are out of sync with global standards. If the rest of the world doesn’t sign on to the EU’s ambitions for reducing emissions targets, he said it may be time for Europe to “discuss our level of ambition” to avoid economic damage.
CU has an agreement with Smoky Hills Wind Project to purchase wind energy, but Smoky Hills says a series of “curtailments” caused CU to buy less energy and for Smoky Hills to receive less value in tax benefits.