Monday, May 14, 2012

Are you willing to pay more for green energy?

Study: Public willing to pay for more green energy
By Andrew Restuccia - 05/14/12 05:27 PM ET
Legislation mandating that power companies obtain a major portion of the country’s electricity from low-carbon energy sources may face an uphill battle on Capitol Hill. But the policy has strong public support, a new study indicates.

The average American is willing to pay $162 per year in higher electricity costs if a “clean energy standard” (CES) becomes law, according to the study, which was published in the journal Nature Climate Change Sunday.

Link here to read more from The Hill E 2 Wire


Anonymous said...

Pandy, I tried to read this report, but couldn't see spending $18. Therefore, we can't see how they conducted their poll or how they framed their questions.

If the authors saw differences in ethnicity, age, economic status and political persuasion then they probably also saw differences between urbanites and people living in rural communities.

Given the divergence then policy-makers should tailor public policy accordingly. City-dwellers, who NEED the power, should pay far, far more than us poor, dumb country folk who have to live next to city dweller's electric generators. We take their criminals, we take their garbage and any other noxious parts of city life that can be exported upstate.

If city dwellers support wind and other renewables unequivocally then it's time they stick solar panels and turbines on top of every building, in every park and offshore in the Atlantic as far as the eye can see. But please, leave us alone.

Anonymous said...

Sure! I would too – if that were remotely possible! I would be thrilled if we could meet our power needs with just wind and solar. And I would happily pay $200 a year more for that. But the survey apparently did not ask people if they were also willing to give up the use of air-conditioning, severely limit the use of their appliances, extinguish the lights in their homes after 8pm, and tolerate periodic brownouts. And the survey did not ask people if they would be willing to pay a much higher (and more realistic) price per year (say, $1100/year) for renewable only power.

And the survey surely made no effort to inquire how many turbines would be an acceptable number of turbines to see from one’s kitchen window.

Hogwash. Surveys can be used to push almost any point – by crafting the questions to get the answers you want. That was certainly the case here.

A national clean energy standard (CES) is the Holy Grail legislation for Big Wind. It would put coal out of business immediately; it would take away the price advantage enjoyed by natural gas. It would give Big Wind and Big Solar a head start over Big Hydro and nuclear. The renewable lobby knows that all the Big Hydro that will ever be built in the US has already been built. They know that permitting for new nuclear is a long and arduous process that would give them plenty to time to build new wind and solar projects.

With a CES the wind lobby would no longer be put in the awkward situation of annual begging for subsidies and tax credits. They could just sit back and relax knowing that their competitors in the energy market had just had lead weights tied to their ankles and thrown into the drink.

The unreliable nature of renewable only power would soon produce a consumer and political backlash of immense proportions. But before that would take hold, renewable developers would have a heyday.

Fortunately – the promotion of a national CES is – in the real world – only at the level of political posturing.

Anonymous said...

Why in the world should we have to pay more? I've been under the impression that wind is free.
BP and many leaseholders pointed this out long ago.

Stay Focused said...

The wind is free -- when it blows. Building a wind farm is far from free. That cost has to be recovered in a reasonable time frame. And the wind developer knows he can't produce and sell enough on- demand electricity to cover the costs without artificial help in the form of a direct subsidy, tax break, or price adjustment.