Mandates? No. Subsidies? Yes!


Adding to its sizeable cushion as the nation’s leading state for installed-wind-power capacity, Texas has just put the finishing touches on a 100,000-acre wind farm. The 627 wind turbines will add 781.5 megawatts of electric-generating capacity and cost just over $1 billion. Said Texas governor Rick Perry, “Texas has shown you don’t need federal mandates to improve the environment or foster the next generation of energy technology.” True. You just need windy areas far from populated areas, a state renewable portfolio standard that mandates more and more renewable capacity, and a federal tax regime that doles out hefty taxpayer-funded subsidies to wind-power developers — all of which I explore in my study on Texas wind energy (PDF here).


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