Friday, April 1, 2011

Renewable Energy...A "tax" on working Vermonters

An informative article in yesterday's Wall Street Journal exposes the real cost of so-called "renewable energy".  For instance, the article points out that it costs $210 per megawatt hour for solar power. This compares to only $95 per megawatt hour for coal generated power.  Government subsidies in the form of tax credits and mandates on utilities to purchase solar power are the only reasons that solar power can be made economically viable.  The problem is that the cost of the subsidies and power purchases (feed-in tariffs) are passed on to consumers who pay higher taxes to fund the subsidies and higher electric rates to cover the costs to utilities for the above market rates they are forced to pay to the producers of solar power.  In Vermont utilities pay $0.30 per kilowatt for solar power (and $0.20 per kilowatt for wind power) which compares to only $0.04 per kilowatt for power produced by Vermont Yankee.

Force feeding renewable energy at great cost to tax payers and consumers is weakening our economy with the burden falling disproportionately on low and fixed income Vermonters.  We should, instead, continue to rely upon proven low cost energy sources until renewable energy technology can make solar and wind generated power competitive with other sources.

1 comment:

  1. Not only is renewable energy too costly, it only comprises 8% of all energy produced in the U.S. including hydro. It is completely unrealistic to think that renewable energy can replace reliable, low cost fossil fuels anytime in the foreseeable future.