Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
was saying this last week...

The fact is that wind power generates many well-paying, desirable jobs in rural places with not much else going for them. New energy sources also allow these states to diversify their economies. This alliance of green and red politics helps keep the industry going at a time of low wholesale electricity prices--the result partly of cheap shale gas, and partly of a drop in demand because of the sluggish recovery.

All would not be lost if the PTC disappeared. Without it, there will still be a trickle of demand for new turbines. Concerns about the intermittent supply of energy from wind are dying down. It turns out that with enough wind farms sited in enough places, the supply evens out. The wind is always blowing somewhere. And a solid majority of Americans continue to favour alternative, clean power sources over traditional fossil fuels.

Private insurers say that last year was the second-most-expensive in American history for disasters related to climate change, costing them $139 billion. But private insurance paid only a quarter of these costs, leaving taxpayers to cover the rest. By comparison, funding renewable energy properly seems rather cheap.

Wind power
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Sat Jun 15th, 2013 at 05:26:50 AM EST
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Apparently "The Economist" is many people, and they don't all talk to each other.

About the intermittency concern, perhaps what has happened is, that in a number of places wind penetration is well over 20% now, and contrary to the scare stories the lights didn't go out... however, their story is still wrong: yes, the wind blows (almost) always somewhere, like the sun is shining almost always somewhere; but still you need back-up. Even for penetrations of 100%-plus. But perhaps Jake is right and The E isn't into due diligence much.

A positive surprise though is that they really make the renewables-climate link explicitly, even if based on an iffy example (but then, money is what they understand). That counts as a victory for the good guys.

by mustakissa on Sat Jun 15th, 2013 at 11:07:29 AM EST
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