A friend in Kansas City sent this notice from Kansas City Power and Light, which is asking for a 12% increase in rates from customers. The short story: new wind turbines are needed to comply with the Kansas Renewable Energy Standards Act and improvements to a generation station to comply with federal regulations by 2015.
Most of the 12% increase will hit small and large businesses the hardest. Not good news in this jobless economy. We’ve seen the Department of Energy choose winners and losers – “green” always wins, until it goes bankrupt on taxpayer’s millions. Same thing happening in Kansas perhaps, with Republicans in charge:
Gov. Sam Brownback and U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran, both Republicans of Kansas, should know better. They teamed up recently on a piece for The Star supporting renewal of the federal wind-energy production tax credit, which expires at the end of this year.
The article assured readers that continuing the subsidy would not be an attempt to “pick winners and losers” and that the wind industry only needs a bit more time to become competitive. The subsidies, they wrote, aren’t cash handouts. They’re “reductions in taxes that help cover the cost of doing business.”
The latter point is pure eyewash. From the point of view of the budget, tax credits are the same as spending money. Either way, the treasury is short the cash.
Brownback gets a cheer from this corner for his audacious tax-reform plan, which would carve out loopholes and cut rates for individual taxpayers — and boost the state’s ability to draw capital and create jobs.
But wind power is another boondoggle, meaning: Congress is picking winners and losers. Wind may have its place in our energy portfolio, but that place can’t be large without a large amount of waste.
Like solar, wind isn’t readily scalable. It uses enormous amounts of land to produce relatively small amounts of energy from an intermittent source at very high capital costs. Read the rest at Kansas City Star.
Thanks to Chloe Mocha!
Miles of Wind Farms in Spearville, Kansas (video)