Energy company MUST Pay for BigWind energy that was NOT used

Does anyone else see the problem(s) here? 1st BigWind is paid, $Billions/year to produce wind energy. 2nd, an energy company must now purchase all of the BigWind energy produced…whether it is truly needed or not.  3rd many states are now forcing these energy companies to use BigWind energy. WHERE is cost containment? WHO will end up paying for this problem? YOU AND I. Remember, that a majority of BigWind’s energy is produced when we DONT need it- times of day and seasons when we do not have shortages.  How can an energy company survive if it is forced to purchase something it does not need or want? How will this impact our energy sources that we TRULY NEED? This is a disaster waiting to happen….have you called our governor and asked him to please support HB 554, yet? 614-466-3555

An energy company must honor its agreement to pay for wind power a farm generates even if it is not transmitted due to power grid overload, the Seventh Circuit ruled.

When it signed a contract with Benton County Wind Farm LLC, Seventh Circuit Judge Frank Easterbrook ruled that Duke Energy Indiana knowingly accepted the risk that the supply of wind energy would outstrip the capacity of the delivery grids.

“Duke wanted Benton’s facilities to exist and called them into existence by promising to pay even if a shortfall of transmission services should lead to curtailment of deliveries,” Easterbrook wrote in Tuesday’s unanimous opinion.

In 2005, Benton accepted Duke’s offer to buy 100 megawatts of renewable energy and used the proceeds to build a wind farm, which began operating in 2008, according to the opinion.

Duke agreed to buy all the power the farm generated for 20 years, which it receives via shared regional grids. In the beginning, the grids handily accommodated Benton’s output.

But by 2015, wind energy had jumped from 100 to 1,745 megawatts…

While the grids used to grant priority to wind energy, allowing it to transmit no matter what, the policy was changed in 2013, placing all wind farms built after 2005 on par with “coal, nuclear, solar, hydro” and other forms of energy, the ruling states.

This forced Benton to reduce its production from 100 percent to 59 percent, literally shutting down its wind turbines 41 percent of the time.

Duke argues it need not pay for energy when the grid forces Benton to shut down to avoid overload, but Benton disagrees.

The case came before the Seventh Circuit after the district court found in favor of Duke, finding that the energy company need only pay for power that reached the “point of metering.” When the grid shuts Benton down, there is zero power at that point.

But Easterbrook, joined by Judges Richard Posner and Joel Flaum, was not buying it: the Seventh Circuit ruled Tuesday that just because the shared grid cannot handle Benton’s output does not mean it is not deliverable.

Rather, the parties’ contract anticipated who is liable when transmission facilities are not available.

“Duke is to pay for power not taken,” …

Source: Energy Firm Must Pay for Farm’s Unused Wind Power