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Category — Education issues (wind)

Privileged Tax Treatment of Industrial Wind Generation: Time to End

“It makes absolutely no sense to claim that we need an ‘all of the above’ energy policy to wean us from ‘climate damaging’ fossil fuel plants by subsidizing a source of energy that can only replace a small fraction of that fossil generation but at a snail’s pace and very high price.”

My name is Kevon Martis. I am the volunteer director of the Interstate Informed Citizen’s Coalition, Inc. We are a bipartisan non-profit based in southeast Michigan.

I speak today at the IER/AEA Wind Policy Luncheon on behalf of citizens living on the front lines of Production Tax Credit (PTC)-driven industrial wind development in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana.

I will get right to the point: Why do we preferentially subsidize wind energy?

1. Is it to free the U.S. from Middle Eastern oil? No. We generate only 1% of our electricity from oil. In fact, the U.S. exports more oil than it uses to produce electricity.

2. Is it because wind energy is cheaper than conventional generation? No. Since wind energy is intermittent, wind “farms” can replace neither baseload nor load following generation facilities. They can only reduce fuel consumption at those facilities. Thus unsubsidized wind energy that costs at least $100/MWh [1] in most markets to generate and integrate into the grid can only save $25-35/MWh of fossil fuel. [2] [Read more →]

December 11, 2013   2 Comments

The New Renewables Narrative: Buyer Beware

“Georgia … Texas … Arizona…. One story is an anomaly; two, a coincidence; three, a trend. When a so-called conservative Republican talks green energy and sounds like he or she is hitting the right notes, be careful. It’s probably the wrong song.”

Creating jobs…. enlarging the tax base… access to markets … energy choices for consumers…. monopoly busting … resource conservation….

The words and terms are being used by two government dependent renewable energy industries to sucker citizens and legislators to retain, if not enlarge, their taxpayer subsidies and ratepayer cross-subsidies in the current energy debate.

Make no mistake: This is an organized attempt to hoodwink  Republicans, conservatives, limited-government and free-market supporters, and even fiscally minded Democrats. Yet the means and ends of the deceivers are 180 degrees from what ordinary fiscally prudent citizens would support if they understood the gloss and what was underneath the hood.

If supporters of renewable energy, such as wind and solar, said it was heavily subsidized on both the state and federal level, had an artificial market created by government mandates, would help mitigate global warming, was the recipient of taxpayer dollars through Obama’s 2009 stimulus bill that funded projects like Solyndra, and was marred by cronyism, the right would run. [Read more →]

October 29, 2013   No Comments

Windpower Propaganda: At A School Near You?

“The misconceived greening of children calls for a major grassroots pushback to entirely de-list wind power from curricula. Rip those wind power pages out of textbooks. Or one day soon, tell the truth about industrial wind, NOT story book bucolic tales of wind ‘farms’ or ‘parks’.”

Any parent involved with their children’s homework or school knows that “green” is in. But too often more than that, “green” notions are presented as self-evident truths where there should be critical thinking and discussion. Also too often, federal and state funds are being dispensed to create the ‘greenest’ possible hearts and minds for tomorrow.

Such is the case with an industry that is economically useless and environmentally destructive: industrial wind power.

A website of the U.S. Department of Energy, Wind Powering America, describes how schools can receive taxpayer funding for wind projects. The site provides links to wind-friendly educational materials from Canada, California, Idaho, the Dakotas, Montana, and Arizona.

Alaska is on this list, where the U.S. Coast Guard assisted and provided a wind turbine for Mt Edgecumbe High School. “The options for education are really limitless,” states Kat Keith of the Alaska Center for Energy and Power. “Using wind energy as a hands-on tool, students can learn about physics, math, and other energy applications.”

Yes, the applications are limitless.… And that is a problem.

Classroom Cronyism

Wind companies and their trade groups are also involved. In Ontario, my province, teachers are asked how they feel about corporate logos in schools in exchange for such “benefits” as free computers. The response is often negative, but industrial-wind propaganda abounds in textbooks, learning materials, and kid-friendly websites.

Take a peak at these corporate “green” programs all around you. [Read more →]

February 11, 2013   24 Comments