It will take days, weeks and months to sort out the election of Donald Trump. Today there was a whole lot of spinning going on in the wind industry. We bring you a sample of media highlights – enjoy!
· The Lima paper claims that West Central Ohio -aka Ground Zero for Wind Development – played a big part in delivering Ohio for Trump. Check out the overwhelming percentage of votes for Trump in our wind-ravaged region.
· Bloomberg reports “If corporate rates fall, as Trump has pledged if he is elected Tuesday, investors will have less need for write-offs through tax-equity investments. With wind and solar projects expected to need $56.2 billion in capital during the next president’s first term, a slump in the tax-equity market may leave developers short.” “Can you get to a 15 percent rate and still have a tax-equity market?” Martin said. “It just doesn’t seem realistic.”
· Giant turbine maker Vestas saw their stock tank following the election. About 40% of Vestas market is in the US. “Shares in Vestas Wind Systems A/S plunged after U.S. voters unexpectedly propelled Republican nominee Donald Trump to the presidency, sparking concern that the renewable- energy industry will face future political headwinds.”
· Vestas, which had been very optimistic prior to the election was singing a different tune this morning. In a statement after the election, Vestas said it would not speculate on different scenarios for the US renewables market – but noted that wind enjoys strong public support in the US, even with Trump supporters. “Polls show that almost 80% of Trump supporters want more wind farms built in the United States,” Vestas said. This is delusional.
· The Washington Post reviews the agony of the green community. “We’re feeling angry and sad and contemplative,” said Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club.” “ Gene Karpinski, president of the League of Conservation Voters, acknowledged that Tuesday was “clearly a disappointing night” for environmental activists. “I’ve been doing this work for 40 years, and there are times we’re very aggressively on offense, and sometimes we need to play defense,” Karpinski said, vowing that the community would continue to organize, litigate and pressure both companies and the government. “Despite what Mr. Trump might think, the climate crisis is real and not a hoax.. We need to do what we can at all levels to double down and make progress, in this country and around the world.” Look for more aggressive action at the state level!
· A pro-renewable pundit writing for Recharge tries see the “bright side” by asserting “If there’s one thing that’s long been clear when it comes to Trump and renewables, it’s that he doesn’t understand what he’s talking about. That’s bad news on many levels, of course, but in a sense it’s also cause for optimism. Trump and his advisers are about to get an education in many areas, including the realities of the energy industry. When that happens he will come to understand that not only is blind opposition to wind and solar power irrational – it’s also terrible politics, even in the most conservative corners of the US.” SAY WHAT????
· Eenews reports “The specifics of what Trump will do to gut climate change work are unclear. But he has promised to eviscerate as many Obama executive orders and regulations as he can as soon as possible. That includes the electricity-sector climate rules known as the Clean Power Plan.” “I think it’s safe to say carbon regulation of the power sector is about to face a sea change,” Segal said.
· E&E News also reported “Gregg Small, CEO of Climate Solutions, a nonprofit based in Washington state, said Trump will be “devastating” to efforts to limit temperature increases worldwide. “There is no way to overstate the disaster this is for the world,” Small said. “It’s honestly hard not to break down in tears at what this means for the planet.”
· Dan Shreve of MAKE summed it up well in ReCharge News: “Nevertheless, the impact to the US renewables sector is undeniably negative, but not necessarily in the near term. Conversely, the surprise win by Trump is likely to prompt an even more substantial order surge in the US to capitalize on existing Production Tax Credit (PTC) incentives, resulting in a more pronounced peak in demand through 2020 for the US wind market. This, of course, assumes that existing support mechanisms are maintained, and MAKE does not expect existing PTC/ITC (Investment Tax Credit for the solar industry) legislation will be impacted by the Trump win, given that elimination of the incentives would require overcoming a Democratic filibuster. The long-term health of the renewables sector is a different story altogether. President-elect Trump has gone on record numerous times to decry the science behind climate change and is not expected to support any renewables initiatives.
“It has been reported that the first weeks of the Trump presidency will likely be focused on rescinding and implementing a wide variety of executive orders. Unfortunately, this is very likely to include the CPP, as it was included as an executive order under Barack Obama’s Climate Action Plan. The ongoing litigation in the US Court of Appeals and expected appeal to the Supreme Court would therefore be moot, and upwards of 55% of wind energy demand from 2020-30 could be eliminated.”
One thing is clear. Now is not the time to quit praying for our country. There are many issues/problems that need to be addressed in this new administration….