Lalala Essay

8219 words - 33 pages

U.S. States Turn Against Renewable Energy as Gas PlungesBy Christopher Martin - Apr 23, 2013More than half the U.S. states with laws requiring utilities to buy renewable energy are considering ways to pare back those mandates after a plunge in natural gas prices brought on by technology that boosted supply.Sixteen of the 29 states with renewable portfolio standards are considering legislation that would reduce the need for wind and solar power, according to researchers backed by the U.S. Energy Department. North Carolina lawmakers may be among the first to move, followed by Colorado and Connecticut.The efforts could benefit U.S. utilities such as Duke Energy Corp (DUK). and PG&E Corp (PCG). as well as Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM)., the biggest U.S. oil producer, and Peabody Energy Corp (BTU)., the largest U.S. coal mining company. Those companies contributed to at least one of the lobby groups pushing the change, according to the Center for Media and Democracy, a Madison, Wisconsin-based non-profit group. It would hurt wind turbine maker Vestas Wind Systems A/S (VWS) and First Solar Inc (FSLR)., which develops solar farms."We're opposed to these mandates, and 2013 will be the most active year ever in terms of efforts to repeal them," said Todd Wynn, task force director for energy of the American Legislative Exchange Council, or Alec, a lobby group pushing for the change. "Natural gas is a clean fuel, and regulators and policy makers are seeing how it's much more affordable than renewable energy."Conference DiscussionPresident Jack Gerard of the American Petroleum Institute, a trade group for the oil and gas industry, along with the former governors of Colorado and New Mexico will speak about the issue today in New York at a conference hosted by Bloomberg New Energy Finance.Hydraulic-fracturing technology opened aging reservoirs for natural gas drilling, driving prices down about 72 percent from their record 2005 high. That's making more expensive wind and solar power projects harder for utility regulators to justify, according to Alec and its allies, which include the Heritage Foundation in Washington."The shale revolutions are not just having ramifactions politically and economicaly in the U.S. but also around the world," said Michael Liebreich, chief executive officer of Bloomberg New Energy Finance. "In 17 years, not that far away, we could reach peak energy use. This is not generally accepted."Threat to WindKilling support for renewable-energy policies threatens sales at companies from wind-turbine makers General Electric Co (GE). and Siemens AG (SIE) to SolarCity Corp. (SCTY), the San Mateo, California-based rooftop energy developer.The push at the state level replicates efforts in Washington. Opposition from Republican lawmakers delayed the extension of a federal tax credit for wind power, prompting Vestas, the biggest turbine maker after GE, to fire 10 percent of its workforce at two Colorado factories."There haven't been any outright...

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