AUSTIN – The Texas Public Policy Foundation today expressed its support for legislation ending Texas’ renewable energy credits trading program. HB 2026 was filed today by Rep. Scott Sanford of McKinney.
“Wind has been the recipient of billions in subsidies for decades,” said Josiah Neeley, policy analyst with the Foundation’s Armstrong Center for Energy and the Environment. “It’s time for the wind industry to stand or fall on its own without government support.”
The Foundation also released today a policy brief highlighting many of the problems with renewable energy subsidies. In Setting the Record Straight on Renewable Energy Subsidies, Bill Peacock, the Foundation’s Vice President for Research and Director of the Center for Economic Freedom, points out that renewable energy subsidies are not only costly in their own right, but their impact on the reliability of the electricity grid may lead to billions of dollars of new subsidies to generators using conventional fuels.
“Concerns about the reliability of the Texas electricity market have highlighted the problems caused by renewable energy subsidies,” said Peacock. “They are also expensive. The renewable energy credits trading program will cost Texas consumers about $70 million this year. Ending the credits program will greatly benefit Texas consumers and improve the reliability of the electricity grid.”
In a previous report by the Foundation, The Cost of the Production Tax Credit and Renewable Energy Subsidies in Texas, Peacock and Neeley calculated that the renewable energy credits trading program will have cost Texans over $500 million in the ten years ending 2015. They also found that renewable energy subsidies decrease “the profitability of non-wind generation and give companies fewer resources and incentives to invest in new capacity. Over time, this will serve to degrade the reliability of the Texas grid, increasing the risk of blackouts.”