AUSTIN—Today, the Texas Public Policy Foundation released the policy perspective, Tax Abatements and the Texas Wind Industry: How Chapters 312 and 313 Are Scarring Rural Texas. The paper raises questions about why Texans are spending billions of dollars to prop up an otherwise unprofitable industry, the main contributions of which are making the electric grid less reliable and scarring the Texas landscape.

“Proponents of tax abatements offered under Chapters 312 and 313 offer no credible evidence whatsoever to show that these programs result in any net overall increase in job-creating business investment in the Lone Star State,” said Stanley Greer, the paper’s author. “However, they do agree that the Texas renewable-energy industry would in all likelihood be significantly smaller if the waivers and abatements had never been authorized.”

“Research shows that renewable energy is not generally available when and where electricity is needed,” said Bill Peacock. “That being the case—and adding in the fact that renewable projects create very few jobs, it is worth asking what exactly Texans have gotten for the more than $1 billion of local tax abatements that have subsidized renewable energy in Texas?”

“Renewable projects are costly and have an array of unintended negative consequences—all at the expense of the taxpayer,” said Policy Analyst Cutter González.

Key Points:

  • Local tax abatements for Texas wind energy cost Texan taxpayers money and have not been proven to generate a net overall increase in job-creating investment.
  • The wind mainly blows in remote areas of the state and it costs additional money to transport the energy created to more populated areas.
  • Wind energy is also unreliable because the wind mainly blows when the energy generated is less needed. For example, Texans rely on fossil fuel generators during heat waves, not wind energy.
  • People who live near wind turbines report harmful effects on their health and happiness.

To read the perspective in full, please visit: