fbpx

Latest Posts

Home

Facebook

Twitter

Search
About

As Blue Wave Fizzles to Purple Haze, There Are Reasons for Optimism Amid Midterm Results

It turns out there was no blue wave or red wave, and the purple haze that settled over the country in the wake of the midterm elections gives me reasons for optimism moving forward regarding energy and environmental policy in the coming years. 1.Senate gains could mean we will finally end the handouts for wind and solar: As you may know, wind and solar are huge recipients of federal tax subsidies, and these subsidies are the main reason why anyone invests in wind or solar. Fortunately, last night's results maybe these subsidies may finally go the way of the dodo bird. The wind...

Continue reading

High Industrial Electricity Prices Harm Manufacturing Sector

We often hear from so-called progressives that we must fight income inequality and move toward renewable energy, but the problem is these two goals are incompatible with each other. This is because intermittent sources of renewable energy like wind and solar make electricity more expensive, and expensive electricity hurts the blue-collar industries like manufacturing and mining, which use an enormous amount of electricity. Just look at California, which has enacted a 100 percent carbon-free energy mandate that will continue to send electricity prices soaring. In fact, industrial electricity prices in California are nearly twice as high as in the rest of the...

Continue reading

If Renewables Are So Cheap Why Is Germany’s Electricity So Expensive?

Renewable energy advocates like to say we should be a lot more like Germany when it comes to generating more electricity from wind and solar. This argument often goes like this: "Wind and solar are already less expensive than fossil fuels, and greedy corporations are the only reason we don't have a clean energy revolution!!!" My question for people making this argument is, "If renewables are so gosh-darn cheap, why does Germany now have the highest electricity prices in Europe?" In fact, the average cost of electricity is nearly 30 cents per kilowatt hour, almost three times higher in Germany than...

Continue reading

If Wind Energy Saves Ratepayers Money, Why Does Xcel Brag About How Wind Investments Increase Profits for Shareholders?

Wind energy is supposed to be the cheapest energy source available, providing energy savings to Minnesota businesses and families.  Just read this opening paragraph of a StarTribune article, which claims that “The cost of wind energy in Minnesota, even without tax subsidies, now appears lower than that of electricity produced from both natural gas and coal.”  The validity of this statement can be proven false simply by using public data provided by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). As you can see from the graph below, the cost of electricity from wind farms is more expensive than both coal and natural gas plants.  Figure 1 The capacity factor of a power plant can...

Continue reading

American Experiment Congratulates PolyMet on DNR Permit to Mine

Center of the American Experiment congratulates PolyMet Mining Corp. on receiving a Permit to Mine for its NorthMet copper-nickel project from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. The proposed PolyMet mine is the most extensively studied project in the history of Minnesota, and after 10 years of study, the DNR has concluded it can be conducted in an environmentally responsible manner. The DNR's approval of the project reinforces the message of our mining reportand campaign: Minnesota can have a strong mining economy and ensure future generations of Minnesotans will enjoy a healthy environment. Developing Minnesota's copper, nickel, platinum, cobalt, and titanium resources can potentially generate more than $3.7 billion dollars...

Continue reading

Biased Much? Why Is the Star-Tribune Using a Misleading Photo of The Proposed PolyMet Mine?

Gee, I wonder how the folks over at the StarTribune feel about the DNR's decision to grant the needed Permit to Mine for the proposed PolyMet copper-nickel mine. Oh wait, the picture they selected for their website shows their hand, among other things. There is no question that passions run high on both sides of the mining debate in Minnesota, but the Strib's decision to publish a photo of the old LTV Taconite facility, which has sat idle since 2001, and label it the PolyMet Mine is incredibly shoddy journalism that does not give readers a fair impression of what the facility will...

Continue reading

BREAKING NEWS: DNR Issues Permit to Mine for PolyMet Project!

The proposed PolyMet copper-nickel, and precious metal mine took a major step forward as the Minnesota DNR has just issued the permit to mine, stating the project meets Minnesota's environmental protection standards. The DNR has issued the permit to mine, six water appropriation permits, two dam safety permits, a public waters work permit, and an endangered species takings permit for the NorthMet project.  The permit to mine includes a financial assurance plan and wetland replacement plan. According to the notice published by the DNR: No project in the history of Minnesota has been more thoroughly evaluated.  In issuing the permits, the DNR has...

Continue reading

Connexus Energy Becomes Nation’s First Electric Co-Op to Bilk Its Members With Solar Plus Storage, Hooray!

Connexus Energy has become the first electric co-op in the country to bilk its 130,000 owner-members by forcing them to pay $31 million in additional costs for unneeded solar plus battery storage. Hooray! I've written about this project before, and as a reminder, the two solar gardens being built will have a whopping 10 MW of capacity, which is the equivalent of 0.056 percent of the installed electricity generating capacity in the state. The batteries will be able to feed 15 MW into the grid at a time and store 30 MWH of electricity, enough for two whole hours! Whoopee! It would be one...

Continue reading

Xcel Tries To Trick Customers Into Thinking They’re Being Treated

I'd say Happy Halloween, but the increasing cost of electricity is downright frightening. Minnesota's electricity prices have been skyrocketing, largely because our state has squandered $15 billion on wind turbines and the additional transmission lines needed to transport the electricity generated by far-away wind turbines to the metro area. While one could argue utility companies are simply responding to the mandates imposed upon them by legislators and regulators, I would vehemently disagree because  Xcel actively lobbies to skew the regulatory apparatus in their favor. In fact, in 2016 Xcel spent more money lobbying than every organization other than the Minnesota Chamber of...

Continue reading

An Energy Injustice: Low Income Households Will Subsidize Wealthy Ones Under New Handouts for Community Solar

Environmental groups may pay lip service to "environmental justice" in low-income communities, but these communities are being hoodwinked by the environmentalists who will make it harder for low-income families to pay their electric bill so the community solar program can be funded, at any cost.  ...

Continue reading