Why not a face off?

The Center’s Isaac Orr challenges Rep. Long to debate.

Center of the American Experiment’s energy policy expert Isaac Orr has challenged Rep. Jamie Long to debate the impact of renewable energy mandates on Minnesota.

Internal documents recently revealed that the University of Minnesota hired Long to rebut Orr’s groundbreaking new research, which concluded that a 50 percent renewable energy mandate would significantly increase the cost of energy in Minnesota and destroy jobs but have no measurable impact on the global climate. Orr has testified before the Minnesota House’s Energy and Climate Finance and Policy Division, of which Long is the vice chair, yet Rep. Long declined to publicly ask questions about the report’s findings.

A document distributed internally during Long’s hiring process maligned Center of the American Experiment’s research as “misinformation,” and said that the U’s Institute on the Environment and Energy Transition Lab would provide a “truth squad” to debunk information coming from the Center.

In response, Orr wrote to Long expressing disappointment that the committee “did not take advantage of the opportunity to ask questions or dispute my research when I came before your committee in a public venue.” He challenged Long to debate the report in a one-on-one public forum.

Orr said his report relies on the best available data from the United States Energy Information Administration, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Lawrence Berkeley Labs, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, as well as numbers provided to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission in utility resource planning documents. The research paper is also a finalist for the national Bob Williams Award for Outstanding Policy Achievement in the category of “Most Influential Research,” and is being replicated in other states.

Orr said he would be available to debate in an afternoon or evening public forum on the following dates:

October 1, 4, 5, 8, 9, 12, 14, 15, 18, 19, 21, 22, 25, 26; November 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 22, 23, 25, 26; and December 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 13, 14, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 23, 27, 28.