Wind Industry Study: Electricity Prices Skyrocketing In Largest Wind Power States

February 28, 2014 by  
Filed under Green Energy News

A newly published paper by the American Wind Energy Association illustrates that electricity prices are rising more than four times the national average in nine of the 11 states with the most wind power consumption. In Texas, the only one of the 11 states with significantly declining electricity prices, deregulation rather than wind power is causing the decline in electricity prices. The findings are a huge blow to advocates of renewable power mandates and wind power subsidies.

Playing Defense on Rising Prices

Susan Williams Sloan, director of state relations for the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), wrote and circulated an article in response to a series of articles I wrote on electricity prices in states with renewable power mandates. Last year, legislators in Colorado, Kansas, and Ohio asked me to testify in legislative hearings about the cost impacts of renewable power mandates in their states. Legislators in another state, North Carolina, asked me to prepare a similar analysis for potential legislative hearings. My research uncovered that electricity prices in all four states rose much more rapidly than the national average after the states enacted their renewable power mandates. My articles documented the rapid price increases in each state, which come as no surprise considering wind power and other forms of renewable power generation are much more costly than conventional power. Indeed, that is why Big Renewables fight tooth and nail for renewable power mandates – because they cannot compete with conventional power sources on a level playing field.

In “Fact Check: New Analysis Rebuts Heartland’s Bogus RPS Claims,” Sloan claimed that in the 11 states in which wind power accounts for more than 7 percent of electricity sales, prices dropped by a little less than 1 percent since 2008. Sloan, referencing another recently published AWEA article, “Wind Power’s Consumer Benefits,” claimed that electricity prices in the remaining 39 states rose 7.8 percent. For the nation as a whole, electricity prices rose 3 percent since 2008. Sloan claimed this proved that my four state-specific electricity studies were “cherry-picked” and “bogus.” Instead, an objective review of Sloan’s self-serving “fact check” provides an informative lesson in how the renewable energy industry plays fast and loose with the facts to deceive federal and state legislators. Indeed, AWEA’s own analysis shows electricity prices are skyrocketing in almost all states with substantial wind power generation.

Skyrocketing Costs in Wind Power States

The 11 states that AWEA identifies as deriving more than 7 percent of their electricity from wind power are Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, and Wyoming.  AWEA says these 11 states have had slightly falling electricity prices since 2008, but official U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) data show nine of the 11 have dramatically rising prices. Let’s take a look at EIA’s electricity price data for each of the 11 states since 2008:wind turbines corn photos 1

Colorado – up 14%

Idaho – up 33%

Iowa – up 17%

Kansas – up 29%

Minnesota – up 22%

North Dakota – up 24%

Oklahoma – down 1%

Oregon – up 15%

South Dakota – up 26%

Texas – down 19%

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