Fact check: Globalwarming.org ignores energy incentive history
The fossil-fuel-funded Globalwarming.org blog has its second post in the past few days attacking wind energy's key incentive, the Production Tax Credit (PTC). The following was posted as a comment:
A more honest view of energy subsidies is provided in a recent report, "What Would Jefferson Do?" from DBL Investors, which found that "current renewable energy subsidies do not constitute an over-subsidized outlier when compared to the historical norm for emerging sources of energy. For example: … the federal commitment to [oil and gas] was five times greater than the federal commitment to renewables during the first 15 years of each [subsidy’s] life, and it was more than 10 times greater for nuclear."
The call for an end to all energy subsidies from Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-KS) could be a laudable goal if it treated all energy resources fairly, and treated energy fairly relative to other sectors. Unfortunately, his proposed legislation doesn't work that way. It unfairly singles out the most promising source of new manufacturing jobs while protecting billions of dollars in incentives for other energy sources and all non-energy sectors. Honest reform of tax incentives must start with a level playing field.
The fact is, with the threat of the PTC coming to an end, the companies that build wind farms are not making plans and American manufacturers are not receiving orders. Job layoffs have started already. The wind industry is facing the recurrence of the boom-bust cycle it has seen in previous years when the PTC was allowed to expire briefly before being renewed by Congress. In the years following expiration, installations of new wind turbines dropped between 73% and 93%, and many jobs were lost. Such a dramatic drop in business is hard on companies and workers and their families at the best of times, but it will be a very punishing blow in the current economy.
The development of wind power and other renewable energy sources is important for the future of the country and health of the environment. Wind energy is clean, abundant, and homegrown, and its cost is dropping. The case for continuing to invest in it is very strong.
Blogger sees PTC extension as 'no-brainer', December 15, 2011
Don't hit wind with job-killing tax hike, December 5, 2011
Fact check: Pompeo and Labrador miss mark with subsidy bill, December 1, 2011
Selective Use of Energy Subsidies is Unfair (letter to editor, Washington Times), November 30, 2011
Red State Energy, Red State Jobs, November 29, 2011
Governors' letter urges prompt extension of wind tax incentive, November 16, 2011
Wind power: Keeping America's lunch money at home, November 14, 2011
Clean energy: A bipartisan goal, November 9, 2011
Iowa Gov. Branstad cites wind jobs, current and future, September 14, 2011