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HipKat

Dumbass Republicans in Texas Senate pass bill to add fees on renewable energ

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...to counter federal subsidies for wind and solar power

While President Joe Biden moves to expand the use of renewable energy nationwide, the Texas Legislature is doing the opposite, adding fees on solar and wind electricity production in the state in hopes of boosting fossil fuels.

Among the reforms of the state’s electric grid following last month’s deadly winter storms, Republicans in the Texas Senate have included new fees aimed at solar and wind companies that Democrats warn would damage the state’s standing as a national leader on renewable energy production, particularly wind power.

State Sen. Charles Schwertner, R-Georgetown, said while wind and solar have expanded in Texas, those are “unreliable” sources of energy because they cannot be called up at a moment’s notice during an emergency like the freeze in February.

To correct that, Schwertner said his bill will give the state’s grid monitor authority to create fees for solar and wind. As it stands now, he said billions of dollars in federal subsidies to wind and solar companies have “tilted” the market too much to benefit those sources of energy, and he aims to re-balance it.

Yet fossil fuels also receive government subsidies of roughly $20 billion a year, according to some estimates.

Democrats in the Senate say raising fees on green energy would be a step in the wrong direction for a state that has done well in developing wind and solar. Over the last decade, renewable energy has surged past coal and nuclear power to become the state’s second-leading source of electrical power, after natural gas, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

“This section could actually be detrimental to renewables,” said State Sen. José Menéndez, D-San Antonio.

The fees are included in a bill that is the most wide-ranging response yet to pass the Texas Senate dealing with the power outages from the winter storms.

Beside the fees on solar and wind producers, the legislation would create an alert system to warn Texans about impending power outages, and would require all electricity providers to weatherize their facilities and transmission lines — a major source of the midstorm power outages. It would also prohibit the wholesale electric index plans that resulted in astronomical bills for some consumers.

“SB 3 comprehensively addresses the root issues that led to the major failures that occurred in the Valentine's Day winter storms,” Schwertner said.

As the Senate debated the legislation, Menéndez said he’s bothered by some who have tried to scapegoat solar and wind generators for the power failures when nuclear, natural gas and coal were all interrupted during the storm, resulting in the rolling blackouts that left millions of Texans without power.

Conservative groups in Texas have long complained about the federal subsidies for wind and solar power that Biden is considering expanding.

Those groups, like the Texas Public Policy Foundation, have argued the billions in federal spending has distorted the free market to the detriment of fossil fuels. While they’d prefer those subsidies be undone, that is unlikely with Democrats in control of Congress and the White House.

The Advanced Power Alliance, an industry trade association created to promote the development of wind and solar, calls the proposed fees in Texas “unnecessary, discriminatory policy that will increase costs on residential, commercial, and industrial electricity consumers.”

The arguments back and forth come as Biden has promised a historic commitment to expanding clean energy production.

 


“There he goes. One of God's own prototypes.

A high-powered mutant of some kind, never even considered for mass production.

Too weird to live, and too rare to die.”

 

Twitter: @HKTheResistance

 

HipKat, on *** other h***, is genuine, unapoli***tically nasty, and w**** his hea** on his ******. jc856

I’ll just forward them to Bridgett. comssvet11

Seek help. soflabillsfan

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Yup, that’ll fix their grid. 
 

Letting the private sector build and run their electrical grid has worked well. In typical TX ‘Dont mess with TX’ fashion they are getting what they asked for and are now out looking for someone else to blame for their poor decisions

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