In a recent, rather befuddled, guest opinion in the Arizona Daily Star, solar energy advocate Terry Finefrock urges the Arizona Corporation Commission to compel our electric utilities to install more solar energy generation. Finefrock starts his article with this sentence: “I challenge the Arizona Corporation Commission to fairly evaluate all electricity-generation technologies and act to actually reduce ratepayer and taxpayer costs.” I agree with that sentence. Ironically, Finefrock’s call for mandating more solar energy will have the opposite effect.
The Beacon Hill Institute at Suffolk University in Boston, MA., has been studying the probable impact of renewable energy standards and tariffs (REST) on a state-by-state basis. This month they published their analysis of Arizona’s renewable energy mandate. You can read the entire report here.
They calculate low, medium, and high estimated impacts. Among their findings are:
The current REST rule will raise the cost of electricity by $389 million for the state’s electricity consumers in 2025, within a range of $239 million and $626 million.
The REST mandate will cost Arizona’s electricity consumers $1.383 billion from 2013 to 2025, within a range of $857 million and $2.221 billion.
Arizona’s electricity prices will rise by 6 percent by 2025, within a range of 3.7 percent and 9.7 percent.
These increased energy prices will hurt Arizona’s households and businesses and, in turn, inflict harm on the state economy. In 2025, the REST would:
Lower employment by 2,500 jobs, within a range of 1,500 jobs and 4,100 jobs.
Reduce real disposable income by $334 million, within a range of $202 million and $543 million.
Decrease investment in the state by $38 million, within a range of $23 million and $61 million.
Increase the average household electricity bill by $128 per year; commercial businesses by an average of $686 per year; and industrial businesses by an average of $28,600 per year.
Petition to Arizona legislature – Dump Renewable Energy MandatesThat post gives six main reasons why we should dump Arizona’s renewable energy mandate. Among those reason are that renewable energy such as solar and wind are much more expensive and very unreliable and the unreliability puts the stability of the electric grid in danger.