FINANCIAL EXPERTS EXPOSE THE WIND ENERGY TAXPAYER RIP OFF
Developers of Wind Farms Run a Race Against the Calendar
Published: December 27, 2012
The tax credit could be equal to one-sixth to one-half of
the revenue from the wind turbine, depending on electricity prices in the area
of the generator.
Let’s Be Gone With the Wind
Why subsidize an industry that kills millions of birds and has no environmental
By John Fund December 28, 2012
Physicist and environmentalist John Droz Jr. notes: “There
is no real environmental benefit to wind, because a) it’s an unpredictable
commodity, b) output from any group of wind projects can and will go to zero on
many occasions, and c) energy generated from industrial wind power cannot be
economically stored.” Germany, which has gone stark raving mad in building wind turbines, has proven just how unreliable it is. On one day this February, wind power delivered a third of Germany’s electricity needs, but four days later, on a still day, it contributed precisely zero.
Then there is the carnage inflicted on Mother Nature. Paul
Driessen reported in the Washington Times that “the U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service estimates that wind turbines kill 440,000 bald and golden eagles,
hawks, falcons, owls, cranes, egrets, geese, and other birds every year in the
U.S., along with countless insect-eating bats.” The actual numbers are probably
far higher. The turbine blades of the nation’s 39,000 windmills move at 100 to
200 miles per hour and can mow down anything that gets in their path.
Obama’s wind-production tax-credit swindle
Serves big business, hurts the environment
By Kevon Martis and Tauna Christensen Wednesday, December 26, 2012
boasts that its huge number of PTC-driven wind-generation plants have “allowed
FPL to avoid building 13 medium-sized power plants since 1980.” Ignoring the
fact that intermittent wind turbines never can replace steady, reliable fossil
plants, it appears that FPL more honestly could have stated the impact of the
PTC thus: The wind-energy production tax credit funded the construction of America’s
largest fossil-fuel generation plant, located in the heart of the environmentally
sensitive Florida Everglades.
NextEra’s huge wind-turbine fleet seems impressive. When adjusted for wind’s on-again, off-again nature,
however, the United States’ largest fleet of wind turbines will
have an average capacity of perhaps 2,700 megawatts (ranging from zero to 9,000
megawatts hourly and daily) yet will cost $18 billion. Had this $18 billion instead constructed eight gas turbine plants like NextEra/FPL’s new one in the Everglades, the company would have nearly 30,000 megawatts of dependable capacity versus wind’s paltry and unreliable 2,700 megawatts. Moreover, gas turbines, unlike wind turbines,
actually could replace dozens of coal plants while reducing carbon-dioxide emissions by half.
The Multiple Distortions of Wind Subsidies
Producers get so much from the government that they can pay utilities to
take their power and still make a profit.
OPINION December 25, 2012,
The costs of wind subsidies are extraordinarily high—$52.48 per one million watt
hours generated, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. By
contrast, the subsidies for generating the same amount of electricity from
nuclear power are $3.10, from hydropower 84 cents, from coal 64 cents, and from
natural gas 63 cents. But the cost to taxpayers is only part of the problem. Subsidized, wind-generated electricity is displacing other, much cheaper sources of power. The subsidies are so high that wind-power producers can pay utilities to take the electricity they produce and still make a profit
Production Tax Credit: Corporate Welfare at its Worst
Under the PTC, wind producers collect a tax credit, whether utilities need the electricity or not. A September 2012 report by the NorthBridge Group illuminates the perverse incentives of the PTC. "In some 'wind-rich' regions of the country, wind producers are paying grid operators to take their generation during periods of surplus supply," the report notes. "But wind producers more than make up the cost of the 'negative price' payment, because they receive a $22 MWH (megawatt hour) federal production tax credit for every MWH generated."8 Furthermore, because the PTC provides a tax benefit for new projects, it encourages wind developers to locate wind farms with little regard to consumer demand, as long as they can be placed on line and their power brought to market to collect the subsidy.
Tax-Blowing Boondoggle: Don't Give Wind Energy More Credit Than It Deserves
We can expect to hear more and more scary stories from the
American Wind Energy Association which, according to Bloomberg, spent
$1.1 million in lobbying this year warning of a crushing blow to American
energy security and jobs if Congress lets the wind Production Tax Credit lapse.
But don’t expect them to mention the high cost of that energy and those jobs,
or that most are temporary construction positions, with less than 20,000
involved in the manufacture of parts used in turbines.
Most Favored Industry
A lame-duck Congress will decide the wind-energy-production tax credit’s
Bryce December 13, 2012
In the history of American business, it’s difficult to find
an industry that has enjoyed more political favoritism than the wind-energy
sector now enjoys.
The wind industry gets subsidies, mandates, and a de facto
exemption from prosecution under some of America’s oldest wildlife laws. And
the wind-energy lobby is doing all it can to make sure that this favoritism is
Cost of Wind-Energy Jobs
The “our industry creates jobs” argument is the last refuge of a subsidy seeker.
Once again, the numbers tell the story. In March, the Congressional Budget Office reported that tax preferences extended to the fossil-fuel sector total about $2.5 billion per year. The American Petroleum Institute has estimated total direct employment from the oil-and-gas sector, not counting service stations, at 1.2 million jobs. That works out to about $2,100 per job, per year.
The “our industry creates a lot of jobs” argument is the last refuge of a subsidy seeker. Congress took away Big Corn’s subsidy last year. It should do the same for Big Wind.
The Truth About Wind Energy Subsidies: They
Efforts from AWEA, the Sierra Club and other well-funded groups have garnered fantastic returns for green activists, but unfortunately, average Americans are stuck with the bill. The PTC is just
another example of a “feel good” policy with a hefty price tag—one thatAmerica can’t afford. In these desperate times, as our nation falls deeper into debt and the political establishment is afraid
to make the tough decisions,
allowing the PTC to expire seems like a no-brainer. Pouring more money into a hopeless industry is as productive as burning dollar bills as fuel.