Wow, and this is occurring withOUT the production tax credit- even though the industry decries the need for it and the PILOT program?! Keep in mind, that our in-state mandates for purchasing renewable energy, draws this industry like vultures – whether we have the wind resources or NOT. Keep in mind the NREL wind map of the USA on our home page. Texas seems awfully far away for our friends in Ohio to be interested, so why did I share this story with you?
1. This drawing looks like that of a young child who has scribbled with a crayon. Can you imagine living amongst this? The lines ONLY represent the transmission lines, not the turbines. This concept could spread to other states, including our own.
2. What do you think these transmission lines cost? Funny how there is no mention of this cost in the entire article. Back in 8/24/2011 in the Texas Tribune, there is an article titled “Cost of Texas Wind Transmission Lines Nears $7 Billion”. The 1st 3 paragraphs of that article follow: The cost of building thousands of miles of transmission lines to carry wind power across Texas is now estimated at $6.79 billion, a 38 percent increase from the initial projection three years ago. The new number, which amounts to roughly $270 for every Texan, comes from the lastest update on the project prepared for the Public Utility Commission (see page 6). Ratepayers will ulitimately be on the hook for the cost, but no one has begun to see the charges appear on their electric bills yet because the transmission companies building the lines must first get approval from the commission before passing on the costs to the customers. A commission spokesman, Terry Hadley, says that the first of these “rate recovery” applications may be filed before the end of the year. Ultimately, the commission says, the charges could amount to $4 to $5 per month on Texas electric bills, for years….
The next big Texas energy boom does not involve tight gas formations in the Barnett Shale, or deepwater oil and gas in the Gulf of Mexico. While fossil resources continue to draw high interest from energy developers and investors in the Lone Star State, Texas hottest energy prospect is wind power in West Texas and the Panhandle.
Thats where a new surge of wind farm development, estimated at 7,500 megawatts of new generation over the next three years, should convert once-sleepy places like Amarillo, Plainview and Lubbock into renewable energy boomtowns.
The new wind power surge, while not a surprise to those familiar with the state’s immense wind resource, is coming to fruition thanks to the convergence of several factors. They include the expiration of a key federal tax credit that pushed wind energy developers to launch projects by the end of 2013; an economic recovery and projected population growth that should drive electricity demand higher in Texas by midcentury; and, most immediately, the completion of one of the largest transmission expansions ever conceived for the sole purpose of bringing renewable energy to market.