Thursday, March 30, 2017

EPA's Pruitt says Coal keeps Prices Low...not in Walker's Coal loving Wisconsin!!!

Scott Walker's Wisconsin has been very good to our coal burning energy companies. Urban Milwaukee:
His administration continues to have no interest in solar and wind power. Indeed the state now gets 63 percent of its energy from coal, up from about 55 percent when he took office. That’s largely because the Kewaunee nuclear power plant was closed, but it’s also because the state has been asleep on solar and wind power for six years.
It's cheap and...wait a minute... 

The analysis, published by the state Public Service Commission, found that 2015 marked the first year that Wisconsin's rates for residential, commercial and industrial electric customers ranked higher than Michigan as well as six other nearby Midwestern states...
Side-by-Side Comparison about Coal and Solar: How could the costs be so high, coal is so cheap in Wisconsin? And what about the "high cost" clean energy, since coal is now more expensive than natural gas and on a par with wind:
Bloomberg: Solar power is now cheaper than coal in some parts of the world. In less than a decade, it’s likely to be the lowest-cost option almost everywhere.


You'll never hear this from Scott Pruitt, the new secretary and enemy of the EPA. He's still pushing the same lie Scott Walker is; wind and solar are "creating double digit increases across the country," and supposed cheap coal is "lowering electric rates for consumers across the country." Maybe 20 years ago. Pruitt appears totally out of touch with the market...and world:



Pruitt's "degree of ignorance" is embarrassing, and will hold the U.S. back worldwide in wind and solar manufacturing and installation...that's not job creation:
In 2016, countries from Chile to the United Arab Emirates broke records with deals to generate electricity from sunshine for less than 3 cents a kilowatt-hour, half the average global cost of coal power. Now, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Mexico are planning auctions and tenders for this year, aiming to drop prices even further. Since 2009, solar prices are down 62 percent, with every part of the supply chain trimming costs. That’s help cut risk premiums on bank loans, and pushed manufacturing capacity to record levels. “These are game-changing numbers, and it’s becoming normal in more and more markets. Every time you double capacity, you reduce the price by 20 percent. It’s also driven by economies of scale and manufacturing experience since the solar boom started more than a decade ago, giving the industry an increasing edge in the competition with fossil fuels.
Thanks to Wisconsin's popular Focus on Energy program, consumers were able to lower their energy bills...
An analysis of the state's energy situation released Thursday found that residential electric bills in Wisconsin actually rank below the Midwest average, because customers here are using far less power on average than those in other nearby states.
...but Walker had this head scratching plan back in March of 2016...
Bill would cut funding for Wisconsin energy efficiency program: An independent 2015 study showing more than $3 in direct savings and more than $6 in net economic benefits for each dollar invested in the Focus on Energy program between 2011 and 2014. “This change is going to hurt customers, they’ll have less opportunity to take advantage of the programs that Focus on Energy offers, and those programs help customers lower their bills,” said Mitch Brey, campaign organizer of the citizen group RePower Madison. “This seems like a program we should be increasing funding for, not decreasing,” said Brey.
Meanwhile the cost of these (solar and wind) power sources have plummeted. “The average long-term contract price for wind power paid by utilities has dropped 60 percent since 2009,” Bloomberg.com reports. “The solar price drop has been even steeper, falling 65 percent.”
Climate change denial never made any sense to me. The overwhelming consensus supporting climate change should have at least made deniers feel compelled to play it safe, you know, just in case.

But my biggest argument targeted people on a more personal level. A while back I wrote: How can Walker say he's pro-life, when he opposes policy that could save 3,500 Americans from premature deaths a year. That's one 9/11 a year. There's more too: 
Reducing carbon emissions also will cut levels of other dangerous pollutants such as fine particles and ozone by more than 25%. Thus the plan brings substantial and measurable public health benefits ... worth from $55 billion to $93 billion per year by 2030, an amount that greatly exceeds the estimated compliance costs of $7.3 billion to $8.8 billion a year.
 Finally, here's PolitiFact explaining away the Republican myth about the cost of emission control:
In the days leading up to the EPA’s June 2 announcement, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce released a study saying the regulations -- which hadn’t even been made public at that point -- would hurt jobs and economy ... but the study’s authors made several critical assumptions that turned out to be incorrect ... (1) they assumed Obama would want to decrease carbon emissions by 42 percent — not 30 percent — before 2030. (2) The chamber also predicted that by 2022, the EPA would have to require natural gas plants to install carbon capture and storage, a much more costly technology, to reach the 42 percent threshold. The EPA already said last year that new natural gas plants would not need to include carbon capture in their facilities.

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