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Stunning Lack of Intellectual Diversity on Energy Board Explains Poor Decisions in Minneapolis

Yesterday I wrote about how Minneapolis' renewable energy targets are just expensive virtue signalling. A closer look at the City advisory board helps explain why the state's largest city could implement such bad policy. The table below shows the members of the Energy Vision Advisory Committy, which is charged by the Board with reviewing and providing feedback on the Clean Energy Partnership’s biennial work plan. As you can see, there is not a single voice on the committee who thinks it may be a good idea to pump the brakes on spending $473,600 on renewable energy credits that will provide no material...

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State Doles Out Even More Money For Solar Power

The State of Minnesota has gifted more taxpayer dollars to the solar industry. This time the subsidies take the form of a $3.5 million dollar state loan package that was used to restart the production of solar panels at a Mountain Iron manufacturing facility. The plant was previously occupied by the solar company Silicon Energy, before it went bankrupt after the first round of solar subsidies, dubbed "Made in Minnesota," expired in 2017. In fact, nearly all of the companies who participated in the program have closed their facilities in the state or gone out of business. So why is the state...

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Wisconsin Consumer Protection Group Say Focus on Electric Bills Instead of Rates Obscures High Cost of Electricity: What Can Minnesota Learn?

The Wisconsin Citizens Utility Board, which protects families and small businesses from increasing electricity prices, said the focus on bills instead of prices obscure the fact that the state has the highest electricity prices in the Midwest. Unfortunately, renewable energy advocates in Minnesota use the same sleight of hand to try and persuade the general public that the state's $15 billion dollar investment in unreliable wind power has not caused electricity prices to skyrocket. This is simply is not true....

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New Great Plains Institute Study Hides the High Cost of Reducing CO2 Emissions

Advocates of reducing CO2 emissions from electricity generation have released a new study attempting to show the necessary steps to make 13 states CO2-free in the Midwest. Unfortunately, the study, released by the Great Plains Institute, failed to mention the massive cost of doing so. Renewable energy advocates like to pretend wind energy is the lowest-cost source of electricity. Yet, for Minnesotans, electric bills have increased 26 percent faster than the national average as we have added more wind and solar to the grid. According to the study, renewables would have to increase their energy share dramatically. Renewables currently provide 11 percent of...

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Ontario, Canada, to Scrap 758 Renewable Energy Contracts to Protect Ratepayers

The new conservative government in Ontario will cancel 758 renewable energy contracts in an effort to lower electricity rates in the province, with the move expected to result in CAD 790 million (USD 602.2m/EUR 513.4m) in ratepayers savings. Will conservatives in Minnesota learn from their example?...

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Power Outages in Texas: What Minnesota Can Learn

In recent years, the electrical grid in Texas (ERCOT) has had moments of almost utter collapse. In 2008, a storm swept through the state causing a large amount of wind capacity to rapidly go off-grid when electricity demand was highest. The grid’s frequency suddenly dropped, leaving many residents without power for up to four hours. This occurred when wind energy was responsible for merely 4 percent of Texas’s electricity generation. It happened again in 2011 when record low temperatures in Texas resulted in record high energy demand. The information we do get from these outages is crucial for understanding how...

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