“Paying” a BigPrice for BigWind

We have, over the years, repeatedly blogged about how renewables will RAISE electricity prices, NOT lower them, as BigWind touts. Unfortunately, our words are clouded by the loud mouths of BigWind…an industry that has now received Bigpaychecks from the US taxpayers for more than 30 years! Proof of OUR claims are below, right here in the USA. Texas electricity rates are HIGHER, not lower, with BigWind. Is this truth being shared? Not nearly enough. If you read the entire article, you will find that this community is now well known, among the renewable world, for its success in becoming 100% renewable.  Unfortunately, the same renewable world is not being 100% honest, in its reporting…
Georgetown, Texas, just 30-miles north of Austin, earned international acclaim after announcing its transition to a 100% renewable energy portfolio. Since mid-2018, all electricity consumed by the City, its residents and businesses, is sourced from a combination of wind and solar plants operating in the state. Georgetown Mayor Dale Ross, a CPA, touted the decision as a “no-brainer” grounded in economics and long-term strategic planning. For Ross, wind and solar were cheaper, more reliable, and the way of the future.
The shift to renewables put Georgetown on the green energy map and raised Mayor Ross’ public profile leading to national media interviews and a coveted spot in Al Gore’s sequel to “An Inconvenient Truth.” Plaudits aside, Georgetown ratepayers were promised measureable reductions in their power expenses. The City’s 2016 annual budget anticipated an overall 10.8% decrease in electric utility expenses from the prior year’s projections owing largely to renewables.
But now that Georgetown is ‘running’ on wind and solar, its officials are facing a harsh reality.
Actual power purchases for 2016 were 22% over budget coming in at $42.6 million against an expected cost of $35 million. In 2017, costs surged again to $52.5 million and all indications are Georgetown electricity customers will take another bath this year. (See table 2)
TABLE 2
Georgetown, Texas Budget/Cost Data
(all figures taken from City budgets posted online)
Year Demand (MWh) Initial
Budget ($)
Amended
Budget ($)
Actual
Costs ($)
2011 547,476 37,448,760 35,018,526 37,455,227
2012 537,986 39,149,279 36,880,197 36,278,168
2013 544,340 34,550,709  29,020,574 27,689,893
2014 565,518 36,768,008 33,012,132 38,384,323
2015 590,029 37,073,038 37,073,038 40,538,526
2016 605,020 34,000,000 35,000,000 42,622,904
2017 621,464  38,000,000 44,000,000 52,526,535
2018 640,108*  44,000,000 52,000,000  tbd
2019 659,311*  48,000,000 tbd
…It’s no secret that renewable energy is flooding the Texas power market and depressing prices, especially during off-peak, off-season periods. ERCOT regularly reports real-time energy prices so the information was there for the City and everyone else to see. Power contracts and federal subsidies further encourage drops as wind and solar resources become immune to market signals and can afford to generate even when prices go negative.
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If BigWind raises electric rates in Ohio, see consequences here!

Ohio results at the bottom, see entire article for detailed tables/charts of detailed effects on jobs in America…
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One European business leader summed up European’s dire energy situation this way: “I can see green taxes, I can see no shale gas, I can see closure of nuclear, I can see manufacturing being driven away. I can see the competition authorities in Brussels blissfully unaware of the tsunami of imported product heading this way and standing blindly in the way of sensible restructuring . . . It’s not looking good for Europe, we are rabbits caught in the headlights, and we have got our trousers down.”…

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Ohio

Almost all of the power produced in Ohio (96 percent)18 comes from conventional and low-
cost sources – coal, natural gas, and nuclear. Ohio is also a major manufacturing state – the manufacturing sector alone represents 17 percent of Ohio’s GDP, generates more than 660,000 jobs, and chips in $36 billion in labor income.19 Ohio generated $576 billion in GDP in 201420,had nearly 5.4 million people employed, and had an unemployment rate of 5.7 percent, below the national average of 6.2 percent.21

Ohio’s economy is on track to continue its growth, with significant growth coming from oil and natural gas development, including from unconventional sources.22 Under European-style energy policies that make fossil fuels more expensive and/or harder to produce, Ohio households and businesses would suffer major economic impacts.

Those impacts start with jobs: under this new pricing regime, Ohio would lose more than 187,000 jobs, and $8.2 billion in wages being paid out to Ohio workers today would also be eliminated. All told, the state’s annual economic output would decline by a staggering $14.8 billion. Our analysis of energy price increase impacts to Ohio (including the extra $5,000 that Ohio households would have to pay for their energy, over and above what they already pay today) is represented in Table 18.

As with the other states we analyzed, we examined what the potential economic value at risk would be for the top 25 energy-intensive industries in Ohio. Similar in many ways to the industrial profile on display in Michigan, Ohio’s economy would stand to lose more than 512,000 jobs if EU energy prices became the norm there. Those lost jobs put nearly $30 billion in wages at risk, and have the potential to deprive Ohioans of more than $57 billion in annual state GDP.

One segment worth noting in Ohio is its iron and steel manufacturing sector, which contributes
$2.2 billion in direct GDP to the state. If energy prices were to rise to European levels, this sector could be at risk (i.e., the industry may stop or move production elsewhere). Because of the ripple effect, the total economic value at risk increases to $5.8 billion. Table 19 shows the economic value at risk for Ohio’s top 25 energy-intensive industry sectors….

http://www.energyxxi.org/sites/default/themes/bricktheme/pdfs/EU_Report.pdf

Which candidate will force you to LOVE BigWind?

Could you still be undecided in this election? You are not alone.  If, however, like us, you are opposed to the renewable energy mandates, for whatever reason, Trump is your candidate.  Clinton will bring more BigWind industrial machines to our landscape, with no accountability for energy production.  Electricity rates will continue to skyrocket under her, as they have with Obama…

WASHINGTON (AP) — THE ISSUE: Energy independence has been a goal of every president since Richard Nixon. Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have very different ways to achieve it.…

Clinton pledges that under her leadership, the U.S. will be able to generate enough renewable energy to power every home in America within 10 years…

Trump vows to “unleash American energy,” allowing unfettered production of oil, coal, natural gas and other sources to push the U.S. toward energy independence and create jobs. Trump would sharply increase oil and gas drilling on federal lands and vows to revive the struggling U.S coal industry. He also would open up offshore drilling in the Atlantic Ocean and other areas where it is blocked.

Trump calls for rescinding the Clean Power Plan, a key element of President Barack Obama’s strategy to fight climate change, as well as a rule to protect small streams and wetlands from development. He also would cancel the 2015 Paris climate agreement and stop U.S. money going to U.N. global warming programs…

Wind and solar power have grown in recent years, thanks in part to support from Obama, but renewable energy sources accounted for just 10 percent of total U.S. energy consumption in 2015. Renewable energy is generally more expensive to produce and use than fossil fuels. Clouds impair solar energy and calm skies slow wind farms.

Source: WHY IT MATTERS: Energy

‘Green Energy’ States have HIGHER electricity rates

Yet, another, study showing this truth. The wind may be free, but converting it to energy is anything BUT free. Please see our tabs, at the top of the page, for other examples. Hover over the tab, for links to other articles that confirm this truth…

States which offered substantial taxpayer support for green energy pay a lot more for electricity….

Statistical analysis run by the DCNF found a positive and statistically significant correlation existed between high electricity bills and states with numberous policies supporting green energy.  States which offered rebates, buy-back programs, tax exemptions and direct cash subsidies to green energy were 64 percent more likely to have higher than average electric bills…

Most analysts agree rising residential electricity prices are also harmful to American households.  Pricey power disproportionately hurts pooreer families and other lower-income groups as the poor tend to spend a higher proportion of their incomes on ‘basic needs’ like power…

As essential goods like electricity becomes more expensive, the cost of producing goods and services that use electricity increases, effectively raising the price of almost everything….

Source: Map: States Supporting Green Energy Have High Electric Bills | The Daily Caller

Are Kansans tired of BigWind raising their electricity rates?

According to a Forbes article, which highlights data from the EIA, Kansas electricity rates have risen 29% since 2008…more than 4x the national average.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jamestaylor/2014/02/27/wind-industry-study-electricity-prices-skyrocketing-in-largest-wind-power-states/

Kansas is one of the largest wind powered states. Their governor has said it right, ‘the wind industry is now strong’. How strong? BigWind is now one of the strongest lobbying groups in DC.  They will fiercely fight this change, just as they are fighting hard to extend their federal handout, the Wind Production Tax Credit.  Remember, we have commented on this truth before…that tax credit makes it worthwhile for foreign companies to build wind sites that are UNprofiittable; in other words, they can lose money generating electricity because the tax credit is so generous! Do you like having your tax dollars wasted like this?

Thank you Ohio Governor Kasich and our legislators, for passing SB 310 to ‘freeze’ our similar mandates. We don’t want to end up with skyrocketing electricity rates here. That policy is not good for our residents, our manufacturers or our job producers….

Gov. Sam Brownback says he’s open to proposals for phasing out a renewable energy requirement for Kansas utilities because policies aimed at nurturing the wind industry shouldn’t remain in place forever.

The Republican governor said Wednesday that he’s not developing a proposal of his own and wants wind energy companies, critics of the requirement and other interested parties to negotiate a new policy.

But Brownback said he has supported the policy because it helped develop the wind industry in Kansas but said the industry is now strong….

via Brownback Open to Phasing Out Kansas Energy Rule – KSAL.com.

If you can’t stand the heat, get out of OHIO!!

Ohio is in the belly of the beast, if the beast is our current renewable energy lobbying group. They are extremely well-funded and deep-pocketed thanks to decades of taxpayer subsidies.  Although many states have attempted to repeal their renewable mandates, Ohio is the closest to the finishing line, so the groups are putting tremendous pressure on our Governor to veto these bills. Who crosses the finish line first is anyone’s guess, but it will be a tremendous test for our Governor. Who will he side with? The citizens or special interest groups????

Also of interest, is a claim in this article by Everpower that the extended setback included in the Ohio Mid-biennium Budget Review applies to the Scioto Ridge Wind Farm.  We do not understand why he thinks this way.  Our interpretation of an analysis by the Legislative Service Commission, is that  applications approved by the Ohio Power Siting Board prior to this amendment are grandfathered in.  This is merely a plea for help by Everpower….

Two legislative efforts nearing the governor’s desk would result in significant challenges for the company developing wind farms in Hardin and Logan counties.

The first was a bill poised for Ohio House passage Wednesday that would pause Ohio’s targets for solar, wind and other renewable sources for two years to let a 12-member legislative commission study the matter. The mandates continue in 2017 unless lawmakers act.

The bill, Senate Bill 310 passed by the Senate in April, would freeze a direction the state had been headed in since 2008, that by 2025, 25 percent of the electricity in Ohio must come from renewable and advanced sources. Wind farm companies had been moving in quickly in the state.

The second is an amendment placed by the Senate Finance Committee into the state’s Mid-Biennium Budget Review, House Bill 483, which would increase the amount of setback required for wind farm turbines. Currently, a setback is measured from a neighboring home; the new legislation would require the measurement begin at a neighboring property line….

Tom Stacy, a spokesman with Save Western Ohio, one of the groups opposed to the wind farms, said not addressing the mandate will mean electricity rates in Ohio will continue to escalate unnecessarily.

 

The subsidy, market, technical and indirect cost implications of wind electricity are enormous, and driving rates up unnecessarily will cost the state billions, in addition to the possibility of losing tens of thousands of jobs in energy-intensive industries,” Stacy said.

via Legislation would pose challenges for Hardin, Logan wind farm –.

How long can BigWind operate in the RED? As long as taxpayers give them handouts…

According to the Energy Information Administration, last year’s average wholesale electricity price in the PJM grid was around $42 per MWh. In bold, below, you plainly see why BigWind is not profitable without our taxpayer handouts (even though they received $67/MWh)…even in windy areas like Illinois. This also explains why electricity rates have skyrocketed, all over the world, where BigWind has a strong presence – and – why electricity rates are now rising in USA states which have a larger wind presence.  And, who is buying Big Sky? Everpower, the company wanting to build multiple wind sites in central Ohio. An important question to ask is this, what will these areas do if these turbines become ABANDONED? How will this affect their farmers, as the turbines dilapidate? How will it affect the local tax rate?  How will it affect neighboring property values? How will it affect future economic growth?….

Suzlon Energy Ltd., the Indian wind- turbine maker in default on $209 million of bonds, may take over one of Illinois’ biggest wind farms if it’s unable to collect a loan it made for the project.

That would stymie two years of efforts by the cash-strapped manufacturer to recover money it needs to pay its own creditors….

Most wind farms sign 20-year power sale agreements with a utility to lock in prices and secure revenue streams. Big Sky doesn’t have one and sells its output on the spot market in the 13-state PJM Interconnection LLC grid, Edison Mission spokesman Douglas McFarlan said in a Feb. 18 e-mail.

The average 24-hour price near Big Sky last year was about $35 a megawatt-hour, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Including tax credits and a government clean-energy cash grant, Big Sky may have earned an average of $67 a megawatt-hour last year, BNEF’s Grace estimated.

The project probably needs to earn $80 a megawatt-hour on average over its lifetime to meet a 10 percent hurdle rate, or the minimum acceptable rate of return for an investor, she said….
via Business: Washington Post Business Page, Business News.