Saturday, February 8, 2020

Wind And Solar Energy Is Free -- That's Why It Costs More -- WSJ -- February 8, 2020

Reported with a straight face:
For Consumers, the plan involves generating more than half of its electricity from renewable sources by 2040, up from 11% last year. To do so, and offset losses from plant closures, it plans to add six gigawatts of solar power—requiring a total of 59 square miles of solar panels clustered across its service territory—as well as a smaller amount of wind power. Increasingly, both technologies compete on cost with natural gas, and because wind and sun are free, the utility will save hundreds of millions of dollars a year on fuel expenses. 
In the very next paragraph:
The transition will come at a cost. The company says it will spend at least $25 billion over the next decade to replace aging gas and electric equipment and prepare the grid for more renewables, batteries and electric vehicles—major capital investments that would eventually boost returns for shareholders. The expenditures will likely result in rate increases for customers, though Consumers anticipates keeping them below the rate of inflation in the coming years. 
But no, wind and solar energy is not free. In general, all wind and solar energy needs fossil fuel back-up.

An incredibly regressive "tax."

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