Comments from AWEA and others on an anti-wind op-ed by Robert Bryce at FoxNews.com disappeared overnight, begging the question: Does Mr. Bryce not want you to see them? Fortunately, we were able to recover some of them from the Web browser on one of our computers for your reading pleasure.
In the middle of a slow holiday news week, FoxNews.com gave Mr. Bryce, a "senior fellow" at the fossil-fuel-funded Manhattan Institute for Public Policy, space to attack AWEA, its CEO Denise Bode, and some of the companies on its Board of Directors. AWEA responded to Mr. Bryce's attacks in a previous article here, but also commented directly on the FoxNews.com site. Others also weighed in with substantive criticisms of Mr. Bryce. In case you missed them:
Good news for everyone who pays an electric bill: Despite what you may have heard, wind energy is increasingly affordable and is saving consumers money.
Data for all 50 states shows very strong evidence that wind is helping to hold electricity costs down, and thatit's other factors that are pushing up bills.
For the top 10 states in wind generation, electricity prices increased only one-third as much as in the 40 lower-wind-use states.
Alabama Power Co., for instance, recently purchased its first wind power. As the Alabama Public Service Commission said, "the delivered price of energy from the wind facility is expected to be lower than the cost the Company would incur to produce that energy from its own resource (i.e. below the Company’s avoided costs), with the resulting energy savings flowing directly to the Company’s customers."
Xcel Energy also recently announced itsfirst new wind energy purchase. Its press release was headlined, "Xcel Energy seeks more low-cost wind energy." It says, "'This proposed purchase contains the lowest-cost wind energy we’ve seen, making it competitive with other energy sources,' said David Eves, president and CEO of Public Service Co. of Colorado, an Xcel Energy company. 'Even though Xcel Energy is ahead of schedule to meet Colorado’s 30 percent renewable energy standard by 2020, we can take advantage of historically low wind prices to give our customers more choice in the energy powering their home and businesses.'"
As far as state Renewable Energy Standards go, Electricitypolicy.com recently found that the states with the largest amount of renewables actually saw LESS of a price increase than the states with the least renewables.
The fact that some of the country's largest and most successful energy companies are also some of the country's largest andmost successful WIND energy companies, proves nothing more than the fact that wind works. It is creating clean, affordable electricity and great new American manufacturing jobs. Who wouldn't want to be a part of that business?
And Mr. Bryce needs to check his figures on government support for the other energy sectors. That's what a group of venture capital investors did recently: “What Would Jefferson Do,” from DBL Investors, found that "the federal commitment to [oil and gas] was five times greater than the federal commitment to renewables during the first 15 years of each [incentive's] life, and it was more than 10 times greater for nuclear."
In other words: If you zoom out and look at the federal incentives for all energy sources in their infancy, renewables actually receive far less of an incentive today than did fossil fuels or nuclear energy at a similar point in their development. In fact, oil and gas subsidies were far greater even during the Great Depression than the more modest federal tax incentive that renewable sources of energy receive today.
We keep no secrets about who our board members are. We only wish Mr. Bryce would be as upfront about his sources of fossilfuel funding, and why in these difficult economic times he seems to becalling for a job-killing, targeted tax increase on an emerging industry that is a recognized source of new American manufacturing jobs.
Bottom line: as the respected consulting firm Navigant recently found, keeping taxes low on wind energy will help the industry grow to almost 100,000 jobs in four years and keep us on track to support the 500,000 jobs that the U.S. DOE forecast in a study conducted by the Bush Administration. Wind power works for America.
Yes. I have to admit it is shocking that large diversified energy/technology corporations like GE and Siemens should have an interest in renewable energy. It would be interesting to explore when they were taken over by pro-big government greens. Also shocking that our government should consider special incentives for nascent industries like solar and wind. It gave billions in land grants, tax breaks and government-funded geological surveys to help the nascent oil industry in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries. And billions in tax breaks, R&D support and liability protection to the nascent nuclear industry when it was getting started in the 1950s. We should never repeat those mistakes. Can no one in this comment chain understand that Bryce's article doesn't say anything? Can no one understand manipulative propaganda when they see it? Can you not even see the subtle way he compares (1) $3.37 billion "over the past two years" to projects of companies that happen to have individual employees on the EWEA's Board, to (2) the $2.84 billion in just ONE YEAR, 2010, in "energy specific subsidies and support" to the oil and gas industry? And yes, there may be thousands of local oil and gas companies, but I notice Bryce doesn't parse out how many of those mom-and-pop companies benefited from subsidies versus the big oil and gas corporations.Key information absent. Long article that says nothing. The usual data-free innuendos and misleading data. Really. The propagandacampaign against renewable energy is so recent, so relentless, and so repetitive in restating the same data-free innuendos and misleading data, that I wish someone would investigate who is funding this, and trying to pull the wool over so many gullible people's eyes.
If we think that fossil carbon is a danger, then a fee should be put on it, and that money put back into the wider economy (say, with equal tax cuts/credits to every individual–this runs into the problem that somehow corporations are regarded as humans and they would demand their share, but let's assume they could be silenced somehow). A price on the cause of the problem–fossil carbon emissions–and an equal incentive to everything other than the problem, that is, the entire economy, is the most efficient way to go.
Yes, breaks to specific non-fossil technologies are suboptimal, but if nothing else is possible, they are needed.
If it is agreed that fossil carbon poses any risk at all, even an extremely small one, we should be able to enact such an efficient modern capitalist incentive for energy transition. This should be done to one degree or another, whether to the tune of 10% reduction a year or 0.00001% per decade. No action at all on this is a firm declaration that every respected science academy on earth is not nearly off the mark by a few degrees, but aiming in the opposite direction. That's insane to declare.
Somehow, we've declared that, so far. So, I will take the wind and solar subsidies in the meantime.
It is an unavoidable problem that fossil carbon has already overloaded the CO2 concentration of the atmosphere, leading to inevitable expansion of the tropics, expansion of the deserts, increase in droughts and floods, lowered food production and higher prices, a gimped world economy, more political instability and war.
Related articles on disinformation from Robert Bryce:
Fact check: Bryce overlooks another convenient truth, December 14, 2011
Fact check: Bryce goes astray on jobs, land use, and more, November 22, 2011
Fact check: Bryce again misinforms on wind costs/benefits, October 20, 2011
Fact check: Bryce errs on incentives, wind's popularity, October 13, 2011
Fact check: Bryce whiffs on wind power and Texas heat wave, August 12, 2011
Robert Bryce, King of the NIMBYs, August 10, 2011
Fact check: Bryce out to lunch with latest anti-wind broadside, August 3, 2011
Fact check: Bryce, Bentek miss on emissions, July 20, 2011
Fact check: Bryce stumbles on land use, sound, steel, benefits, June 8, 2011
Power hungry? Or just on a low-fact diet? (Michael Goggin's review of Robert Bryce's book Power Hungry), July 2, 2010