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A Conservative Vision for Energy Policy in Minnesota

Last week, Ben Gerber, who is a board member for the Minnesota Conservative Energy Forum (MNCEF) took to the pages of The Minnesota Reformer, which is likely the most progressive outlet in the state, in an attempt to defend his positions on energy policy. In his article, which I encourage you to read, Mr. Gerber argues that MNCEF, and not Center of the American Experiment, is the group that opposes heavy-handed government solutions. But this claim is incorrect, as I spell out in my reply below. I am told may be run on the Reformer's website at some date in the future. The...

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Canadian Hydroelectric Transmission Line Will Bring In More Renewable Energy Than All Minnesota Solar Projects – But None of It is “Renewable”

The newly-completed transmission line bringing hydroelectric power from Canada would supply more renewable energy than all of Minnesota's solar facilities, combined. But none of this power will count as "renewable" under Minnesota state law....

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Benjamin Zycher: Earth Day 2020: The Exhaustion of the Climate Left

The following article originally appeared in RealClearMarkets and was written by Benjamin Zycher: “Climate Action” is the theme of this 50th Earth Day, and it is useful to note that these five decades of apocalyptic warnings truly are amazing in their consistency: Not one actually has come to pass. The juxtaposition of two news stories, respectively from 1988 and from last January, is among the more amusing tidbits from decades of climate fearmongering. The former: “A gradual rise in sea level is threatening to completely cover” the Maldives. The latter: “Maldives to open four new airports in 2020.” Amusement aside, the theme this year is a clear sign...

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MPCA Gets It Right On Not Regulating Greenhouse Gases on Dairy Farm Expansion

Center of the American Experiment has been reporting on a developing story where environmental activist groups like the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy (MCEA) and the Land Stewardship Project (LSP) are using the court system to attack Minnesota farmers. These groups have sued the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) for not regulating greenhouse gas emissions from a dairy farm seeking to expand their operation in Southeastern Minnesota. Thankfully, MPCA delivered a decisive win for farmers when it determined that the dairy farm would not need to complete a time consuming and expensive Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the greenhouse gases that...

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Study in International Journal of Sustainable Energy Finds Wind Turbines Are Not Cost Effective

A newly-released study in the International Journal of Sustainable Energy confirms what we at Center of the American Experiment have been saying for a long time, the metric that is often used to compare the cost of different energy resources, the Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE), is not an appropriate metric to model the cost of weather dependent resources like wind and solar, and that wind turbines are not cost effective when their intermittency and unreliability are taken into account. Levelized Cost of Energy Estimates in A Weather-Dependent World Levelized Cost of Energy estimates used to make sense 20 years ago because...

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What Would a Joe Biden Fracking Ban Look Like? Part Seven: Rising Greenhouse Gas Emissions

During the Democrat debate between Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and former Vice-President Joe Biden on Sunday, March 15, 2020, Vice-President Biden stated that he would allow “no new fracking” as a means of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. However, banning fracking would cause  greenhouse gas emissions from Minnesota power plants to increase by approximately 25 percent above estimated 2019 levels. Greenhouse gas emissions would increase because a fracking ban would triple the cost of generating electricity with natural gas, making it impossibly expensive to use. As a result, Minnesota utilities would likely return to burning more coal to generate electricity, which emits...

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German Electricity Prices Have Increased 2.5 Times Since 2008

Every year for the last several years, Minnesota lawmakers have piled onto a plane to visit Germany, which is supposedly a renewable energy utopia. It is amazing that so many taxpayer dollars can be used to learn so little, because Germany is a prime example of what not to do. I've written about this topic many times, but the myth that Germany's energy system is a success story never seems to go away. Over the last 12 years, Germany has spent hundreds of billions of Euro on wind and solar, and the only thing they have to show for it is...

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Despite Massive Wind and Solar Spending, Minnesota Carbon Dioxide Emissions Essentially Flat Since 2012

When lawmakers like Governor Tim Walz and members of the Minnesota House of Representatives call for massively increasing the amount of wind and solar on the grid, they often do so because they claim climate change is an "existential crisis." If these lawmakers truly believe this talking point, though, they wouldn't be advocating for building more wind and solar. This is because Minnesota has seen virtually no decline in annual CO2 emissions since 2012, despite the fact that we have seen wind and solar capacity increase by 50 percent during this time frame, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) data. The...

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Minnesota Had More Wind and Solar in 2018 than Ever Before But CO2 Emissions Went Up

Minnesota had more wind turbines and solar panels in 2018 than in any year prior, but carbon dioxide emissions from the electricity generation sector increased compared to 2017 and 2016 levels, according to the most recent data released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). Share the news far and wide!...

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Video: The Year 2019 on ElectricityMap [Europe]

You can talk to people about the weather-driven variation in electricity output from wind and solar power until you're blue in the face, but it will never be as effective as showing them, in real time, what sources of electricity generation are currently keeping the lights on. This is where ElectricityMap becomes an indispensable tool. If you're interested in energy issues, you must download this app on your phone. The reason this app is such a great tool is that it shows how "green" the electricity is in areas throughout the world, as measured by the amount of carbon dioxide produced...

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