Articles filed under Energy Policy from Ohio
The battle to control Ohio’s energy mix has been noisy and partisan since 2008, when the Legislature adopted an alternative energy standard.
Rep. Bill Seitz, R-Green Township, explained on the House floor why Ohio's suburban residents want wind turbines in their state but not in their backyards. "They think it’s just fine to put these monstrosities all over rural Ohio, to ruin the landscape in rural Ohio, to create 600-foot-tall structures with moving parts where the blades break and the fires start and the birds and bats are chopped to smithereens," Seitz said.
CLEVELAND, Ohio – Republican lawmakers in Columbus have repeatedly made things easier for energy interests in the state, and that includes blocking local control over where oil and gas wells can go.
CLEVELAND, Ohio – A bill making its way through the Ohio legislature would let local officials ban large wind and solar farms in their communities, usurping the authority that now rests with the Ohio Power Siting Board.
Sen. Bill Reineke (R., Tiffin), who sponsored the bill with Sen. Rob McColley (R., Napoleon), dismissed arguments that there is already local input in the decisions of the five-member Ohio Power Siting Board as to where such projects would be located. “I'm telling you that in Seneca County, my home county, we now have four to six projects in the queue,” Mr. Reineke said. “When you consider all the letters, the testimonies, the resolutions against these projects that have come from constituents, township trustees, commissioners, mayors, etc., it becomes clear that the current process has no regard for local input.
Republican lawmakers are making changes to a bill that aims to empower local voters to reject nearby renewable energy projects. Ohio Senator says he is trying to strike a balance between local control and economic development.
Mines in the Upper Midwest, like the Knight Hawk mine in southern Illinois, produce fuel that powers much of the region's electricity production. That could change as coal plants retire and new wind and solar facilities come online.
The legislation would support FirstEnergy’s Davis-Besse and Perry plants through a fee added to customer bills beginning in 2021. It would be offset by reducing Ohio’s clean-energy goals to 8.5% instead of the 12.5% target now. The measure also eliminates monthly surcharges to support energy efficiency measures.
A Senate committee on Monday rolled out yet another version of a bill that bails out the state’s two nuclear plants, but now increases support for renewable energy in Ohio while still promising lower electricity bills for consumers.
Ohio lawmakers are now considering a controversial energy bill, H.B. 6, that would eliminate or weaken the state’s renewable energy standard — a long-sought move by Republicans that would further undermine wind development there. Another legislative effort would increase the risk faced in siting new projects.
Legislation to gut Ohio’s green-energy mandates and set up customer-funded subsidies to nuclear and coal power plants passed the Ohio House on Wednesday, thanks to key support from several House Democrats. The 53-43 vote on House Bill 6 came after yet another series of last-minute changes to the controversial bill that would allow subsidies to already-approved solar plants, limit property tax devaluation on the nuclear plants, and cap nuclear subsidies if electricity prices increase.
“A great frustration of mine is when those outside of the community are trying to tell us how to run our counties,” Reineke said in the release. “This amendment supplements the current setback law by bringing the final decision regarding a wind farm project to the local township level.” In the release, Reineke said he has received constituent emails and calls that “come into my office repeatedly” about local control. Among the concerns reported, he said.
Wind energy experts are pushing back against a change made to the House energy bill, HB6, that allows municipalities to vote on wind farm projects. Opponents of the change say this will dramatically impact the wind industry.
Opponents are outraged over changes made to the so-called “clean air” bill approved by a House committee. The legislation subsidizes nuclear and coal plants, repeals required support for renewable energy, and strips the ability for wind and solar to receive credits.
Substitute House Bill 6, introduced to members of the Ohio House Energy Generation subcommittee minutes before a scheduled fourth hearing late Thursday, keeps language that would allow utilities and independent retail power suppliers to ignore previously enacted renewable energy benchmarks which top out at 12.5 percent by 2027. Without those benchmarks, wind and solar developers worry that the utility market for their power would weaken.
“It’s unclear why a technology that is so expensive should be co-funded by U.S. taxpayers,” according to a statement Wednesday from Institute for Energy Research President Thomas Pyle. The $150 million project is eligible for as much as $50 million in federal funding.
Ohio lawmakers are considering a bill that would relax the state’s strict wind turbine setbacks rules but again weaken renewable and energy efficiency standards.
Ohio utilities would still have to find more of their power from renewable sources like solar and wind but not as much as required by current law under a bill that could soon see a Senate vote.
A proposal from Ohio Senate GOP leaders to redraw rules determining how far wind turbines can be from adjacent properties is expected to attract billions of dollars in new wind farm investments -- and pit clean energy groups against the wind industry. The new setback rules are part of legislation that would also sharply reduce the decade-old state mandates requiring power companies to supply electricity generated by wind, solar and other renewable technologies. And it would tinker with laws requiring utilities to offer energy efficiency programs to customers.(National Wind Technology Center )
CLEVELAND, Ohio -- There soon may be more wind farms in Ohio.