Not so long ago it seemed Big Wind was on the verge of collapse what with the federal subsidies the industry relies on about to be pulled. But then those subsidies were renewed, and now there are plans for a 41% expansion of wind power capacity in North Dakota:
The extension of a key federal subsidy late last year has helped revive interest in developing new wind energy projects in North Dakota, based on documents filed with state regulators.
So far, five companies have filed letters of intent with the state’s Public Service Commission, outlining proposals to start construction this year on wind farms that would add 686 megawatts of wind power capacity, Commissioner Brian Kalk said last week.
That would be a 41 percent increase of the state’s wind energy capacity.
Although letters of intent are far from certain signs that projects will be completed, the five proposals would amount to about $1 billion worth of construction if they are completed, Kalk said.
The 2.2 cents per kilowatt hour subsidy for wind not only wasn’t ended, it was actually expanded to 2.3 cents. Meaning the already over-extended wind power industry, which can’t survive without subsidies from our bankrupt federal government, is now getting an even sweeter deal.
After years and years of subsidies, with the wind industry showing no signs they’ll be able to survive without being heavily subsidized, don’t you think it’s maybe time to admit that the whole thing was a bad idea?
Of course, in government, bad ideas don’t go away. They get bigger budgets.