Texas Windpower: EU Energy, Enron LegacyBy Josiah Neeley -- February 9, 2012 14 Comments
Texas and Europe don’t have a lot in common. But when it comes to government support for renewable energy, the Lone Star state has followed the same course as many European nations.
In the late 1990s, while the European Union was urging member nations to adopt targets for the percentage of their energy produced from renewable sources, Texas enacted a renewable portfolio standard (RPS) mandating that the state’s competitive electric providers buy a minimum 2,000 MW of qualifying renewable energy by 2009. The purchase mandate was part of a broad electricity restructuring bill sponsored by Enron Corp., parent of Enron Wind Corporation, a story detailed elsewhere at MasterResource.
The Texas Legislature, with the support of Governor Rick Perry, later increased the RPS to 10,000-MW by 2025. Texas met this target for installed wind capacity in 2010, a full fifteen years ahead of schedule.…
Governor Rick Perry (R-TX), T. Boone Pickens, and the Enron Legacy of WindpowerBy Robert Bradley Jr. -- March 24, 2009 15 Comments
Last December, Texas governor Rick Perry, speaking at a Houston fundraiser, sadly noted how President George W. Bush had lost his way in Washington, D.C. His good friend had compromised his principles and left the nation in a lurch, however unintentionally.
But then the governor launched into his Texas-is-great stump speech that included kudos to windpower, a new large industry (no) thanks to a legislative mandate requiring that Texas electricity retailers purchase qualifying renewable energy. (Wind is the most economical of the qualifiers.) The 1999 mandate, enacted with the crucial help of Enron lobbyists, was increased in 2002 with a powerful wind lobby at work. And so at the point of a gun, Texas became the leading windpower state in the country, passing California along the way.
So it was not surprising that last Saturday night Gov.…
Global Warming Activities at Enron: At the Center (Part I)By Bruce Stram -- January 27, 2020 1 Comment
Editor Note: The important role of defunct Enron Corp on climate issues has been well documented at MasterResource. This post by Bruce Stram, who served as Enron’s chief economist for most of his 20 years at the corporation, adds to the historical record. [Part II tomorrow will describe Enron’s revisionist view of the natural gas resource base that was related to promoting gas as a “bridge fuel” to “sustainability.”]
Several papers I had written made me Enron’s environmental policy lead by 1992. I was blessed with a CEO/Chairman Ken Lay who understood that a carbon tax or cap and trade was good for natural gas relative to other fossil fuels, and we were of course a natural gas company.
We had developed a theme about the environmental goodness of natural gas.…
Why is California Blaming Wildfires on a Small Percentage of Downed Power Lines? (Part I)By Wayne Lusvardi -- November 13, 2019 5 Comments
“California’s reliance on hydropower and proliferation of remote, centralized renewable energy plants; the mandated environmental mothballing of 19 coastal natural gas power plants located close to customers; redundant transmission lines for green power; and seasonal wind blasts, results in lethal blast-furnace-like wildfires that leave trees alone but incinerate houses.”
“California leaders and opinion-makers must first abandon their blame game and diagnose the problem more clearly than using clichés like ‘global warming,’ ‘Donald Trump,’ ‘greed’ or even ‘not enough clear cutting,’ if they are going to responsibly deal with the dangerous unintended consequences of de-modernizing its electric grid.”
A question arising out of California’s recent wave of wind-fanned wildfires, is why are public officials mainly attributing the cause to downed electric transmission lines that comprise less than ten percent of all the causes of such fires?…