Claim: Distributed generation and net metering policies harm utilities and provide no benefits to ratepayers.
Fact: Distributed generation and net energy metering provide economic, environmental, and technical benefits to both utilities and ratepayers. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Government support for renewable energy is costly, ineffective, and more significant than support for conventional fossil fuels.
Fact: Fossil fuels have received far greater government support, over a much longer period of time, than renewables have. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Energy efficiency measures are too costly and won’t make a difference in how much energy we consume.
Fact: Energy efficiency is a low-cost, job-creating method for significantly reducing U.S. energy demand. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: The renewable energy and clean tech industries don’t create jobs.
Fact: Renewable energy and clean tech industries have spurred significant job creation in the United States. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: The Renewable Fuel Standard is a drain on the economy and its goals cannot be met without running into the “blend wall.” The EPA is correct to propose reducing it for 2014.
Fact: The Renewable Fuel Standard creates jobs, lowers gasoline prices, and fights climate change. The EPA’s proposal to lower biofuel volume requirements will harm a thriving American industry. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: 2013 was a tough year for renewable energy.
Fact: Renewable energy is cheaper, more popular and powering more of America than ever before. Here are the top 13 facts of 2013.
Claim: Only liberals support renewable energy.
Fact: Renewable energy enjoys strong bipartisan support from conservatives, liberals, and independents alike. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: The Northeast doesn’t have much renewable energy. It’s too costly to develop and the weather in the region isn’t suitable for wind or solar.
Fact: The Northeast has reaped many benefits from renewable energy sources, and the region is well-positioned to rely on renewables more heavily. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Electric vehicles are inherently unsafe and prone to battery fires. The three recently-reported Tesla Model S fires are proof of this danger.
Fact: Electric vehicles are just as safe as traditional gas-powered vehicles, if not safer, as many tests show. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: California’s push for renewable energy has failed, leading to some of the highest electricity prices in the country and hurting the economy.
Fact: California is leading the nation in numerous clean energy categories and the costs are negligible. By embracing renewables and energy efficiency, CA built an attractive business environment to draw billions of investment dollars and thousands of new jobs. Get the Facts
Claim: Distributed generation (DG) is a niche market for rich, “off-the-grid” enthusiasts. DG increases costs for all ratepayers while also making the grid unreliable.
Fact: Distributed generation – electricity produced and consumed onsite – is growing quickly. In many places, rooftop solar, geothermal and other technologies are providing power to property owners and lowering costs while increasing the resilience of the electric grid. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Offshore wind is far too expensive to develop and it would never provide enough power to justify the investment.
Claim: Energy efficiency is unproven and expensive to implement, and forcing companies and individuals to enact energy efficient practices is bad policy.
Claim: Power companies don’t like renewable energy because it’s bad for business. They stick to fossil fuels to provide power to their customers.
Claim: The Renewable Fuel Standard is costly, mandates unrealistic fuels and takes away the incentive for biofuel producers to lower costs and grow the industry.
Claim: Solar is a niche energy market that’s only good for powering off-the-grid homes. It’s too expensive and solar companies are completely bankrupt.
Claim: The only energy innovators that matter are in the fossil fuel sector. Renewables aren’t innovating and that’s why they’re so expensive.
Claim: Wind energy can’t provide enough power to keep the lights on and will always remain a niche industry that the private sector has no interest in.
Claim: Fisker Automotive, Solyndra and other struggling green energy companies backed by Department of Energy loans are evidence that the government wastes money trying to pick “winners.”
Claim: With cheap, abundant natural gas and coal, expensive renewables are unnecessary. Utilities should stick with these fuels instead of having to deploy new, more expensive renewable resources.
Fact: Natural gas costs have a history of high volatility while renewable prices are continuing to decrease, allowing for long-term pricing. The prices of renewable energy resources are already starting to beat coal prices and utilities are trading coal for renewables across the country. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Renewable energy subsidies prop up an otherwise economically-unviable industry. We should “level the playing field” by removing clean energy handouts and let renewables compete with fossil fuels.
Claim: The environmental benefits of renewable energy are wildly overstated.
Claim: Renewable energy only represents a tiny bit of our power supply and will never be able to meet America’s power needs. Renewables will always be a fringe technology, only powering a handful of cars and off-the-grid homes.
Claim: State Renewable Portfolio Standards are job-killing government mandates that offer no economic benefits and cause skyrocketing electricity rates.
Fact: State RPS policies are currently driving over 1/3rd of new renewable energy development across America in a cost-competitive manner that protects American consumers. Repealing these policies will risk billions in private investment and threatens hundreds of thousands jobs in 29 states plus the District of Columbia. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Biofuels are too expensive for military use, bad for cars and will never be produced in large enough quantities for consumer use. The Renewable Fuel Standard encourages the use of food for fuel and should be ended.
Claim: Renewable energy is unreliable and must be continually backed up by fossil fuels for times when the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine.
Fact: Renewable energy is more than capable of providing steady, reliable electricity for consumers in a variety of scenarios. As storage technology advances, any remaining challenges with constant output will soon become a thing of the past. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Investment in renewable energy is in a downward spiral and major banks and institutional investors are cutting back their clean tech portfolios. Private investors do not believe in renewable energy.
Fact: Investment in clean and renewable energy is at record levels across the private sector. Clean technology is the leading venture capital category and many major Wall Street banks have dedicated, multi-billion dollar clean tech portfolios.Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Electric Vehicles (EVs) are unpopular, unaffordable and unsafe.
Fact: EVs are selling fast, saving consumers money, creating jobs and are just as safe as the average gas-fueled vehicle. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: The PTC is a government subsidy that doesn’t really help the wind industry grow and hasn’t resulted in jobs or economic activity since its inception.
Fact: The PTC is a credit used by businesses to expand their renewable electricity generation capability and provide jobs and expand the market for renewable electricity.Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Energy efficiency standards do not result in significant energy savings or lower costs for certified buildings.
Fact: Rigorous, market-based standards such as the LEED program have achieved significant energy, water, and cost savings in buildings. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: America doesn’t need improvements to our electric grid; we have one that works just fine and new transmission drives up electrical bills. We are also “overbuilding” to help renewables that aren’t even in service yet.
Fact: The current grid is outdated and new transmission will increase efficiency, open access to cheaper renewable energy and ultimately save consumers money.Click here to get the facts.
Claim: People near wind turbines suffer from headaches, sleeplessness, and other negative side effects.
Fact: No credible medical source has verified these affects, and sound experts have criticized such claims.Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Renewable energy technologies use just as much water as traditional energy consumption and are unsuitable for drier regions.
Fact: On the whole, renewable energy uses far less water than traditional energy sources, and mainstream wind and solar PV technologies use little to no water. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Renewable Portfolio Standards will not help our energy needs and puts an undue burden on the taxpayers.
Fact: State RPS policies are widely credited with lowering costs, bring better renewable energy tech to the market and opportunities for local businesses.Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Renewable energy development decimates wildlife and will lead to the extinction of endangered species.
Fact: Renewable energy development is environmentally friendly and less damaging to wildlife than traditional energy.Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Even with massive subsidies, renewable energy technology cannot survive. Renewables have been getting subsidies for years now; they should be able to stand on their own.
Fact: All energy production in the U.S. receives significant federal support, dating back to the first oil subsidies in early 20th century. Click here to get the facts.
Claim: Renewable energy is too expensive and drives up electricity and fuel prices.
Claim: Wind farms are a threat to bird populations – and their harmful effect on bird populations is only getting worse as more wind farms are built.
Claim: Wind energy is too expensive and can’t compete with other sources of electricity.
Claim: The stimulus bill’s support for clean, renewable energy sent jobs overseas.
Claim: The Obama administration is forcing the U.S. Navy to use unproven biofuels.
Claim: Offshore wind energy is too expensive and can’t compete with traditional power sources to help meet our energy needs.
Claim: The Department of Energy’s Loan Guarantee Program is wasting taxpayer money. Abound Solar’s bankruptcy is proof of that.
Claim: Renewable energy doesn’t create jobs and raises electricity costs.
Claim: No one is investing in renewable energy.
Fact: In 2011, more than $48 billion was invested in renewable energy in the United States. Click here to learn more about investment in renewable energy.
The Daily Update
When You Start with a Faulty Assumption, You End Up with a Faulty Conclusion: The Problem with an Anti-Cellulosic Ethanol Study
ACORE— April 24th, 2014
This weekend, the Associated Press published its coverage of the results of a recent University of Nebraska study that wrongly concluded that cellulosic ethanol from corn residue (like stover) could result in 7% more greenhouse gas emissions than gasoline in the short term. The study was conducted under conditions that are entirely inapplicable to modern cellulosic ethanol production, rendering its findings meaningless. Renewable fuel experts and agricultural scientists alike have slammed the study’s methodology and the EPA also distanced itself from its findings – with good reason.
Federal News Radio— April 24th, 2014
Some might think the Navy’s pursuit of renewable energy is nothing more than a ruse to “go green” and win an award from the Environment Protection Agency.
Dennis McGinn, assistant secretary of the Navy for energy, installations and environment, says that’s a misperception.
Columbus Dispatch— April 24th, 2014
Energy-efficiency programs that could be changed or eliminated as a result of a legislative proposal have led to consumer savings of $1 billion compared with costs of about $500 million, according to company reports and an analysis by “green” energy advocates.
Those figures cover the first four years — 2009 to 2012 — of programs that, under current state law, were expected to grow each year until 2025.
Des Moines Register— April 24th, 2014
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said tech companies Microsoft and Google, with large data center investments in Iowa, rank among the top five organizations nationally for using electricity from renewable energy.
EPA released its top 100 green power users today, with Intel Corp. leading the list, followed by Kohl’s Department Stores, Microsoft Corp., Whole Foods Market and Google.
The Bulletin— April 24th, 2014
Days after the Oregon Institute of Technology unveiled a new 1.75-megawatt geothermal power plant, the U.S. Department of Energy praised the Klamath Falls school for its commitment to renewable energy.
Oregon Tech cut the ribbon on its new $14.7 million plant on Friday, said Charlie Jones, director of the school’s Oregon Renewable Energy Center. The new plant joins a 280-kilowatt geothermal plant that has been in operation since 2010.
Bloomberg— April 23rd, 2014
Geothermal power producers added the most capacity since 1997 last year as developing nations in Asia and other regions seek alternative energy sources, while installation declined in the U.S., according to the Geothermal Energy Association.
The industry added 530 megawatts of new power plants and total installed capacity now exceeds 12 gigawatts worldwide, the Washington-based trade group said today in its annual report. Geothermal power is growing at 4 percent to 5 percent annually.
CNN— April 23rd, 2014
At long last, this Earth Day we celebrate the true dawn of the Solar Age. That sunrise is hastened, here and abroad, by the slow demise of the once-touted “too-cheap-to-meter” Atomic Age of nuclear power.
As utilities find nuclear power less and less cost effective, new solar photovoltaic installations in the United States are springing up. New solar installations in 2013 reached a record 4.2 gigawatts, bringing the total to 10. On average, one gigawatt of solar photovoltaics powers 164,000 U.S. homes. That means power for 1.6 million homes.
Des Moines Register— April 23rd, 2014
Iowa’s wind energy will fully power the first phase of Google’s Council Bluffs data center, adding another Iowa data center that is receiving power from renewable energy.
Under an agreement with Google, MidAmerican Energy will provide up to 407 megawatts of wind-sourced energy to the Mountain View, Calif.-based technology company’s Council Bluffs data center.
Reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of biofuels from corn stover, compared to gasoline.
(Source: Environmental Research Letters, http://bit.ly/1reJPLT)
National Renewable Energy Policy Forum
March 27-28, 2014 | Washington, DC
ACORE’s 2014 National Renewable Energy Policy Forum will focus on “Evolving Policy to Keep Pace With Market Innovation.” The forum features luminaries such as EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, and Representative Sandy Levin discussing how federal policy can support and complement the renewable energy industry.