Sprechen sie Deutsch? — It translates as a ‘green’ energy boondoggle

When the Nevada Legislature passed Senate Bill 123, everyone was so thrilled about shutting down all that dirty coal-fired power plants and building millions of dollars worth of bright new clean energy solar and wind farms.

Perhaps, they should’ve asked the German electricity customers how saving the planet is working out for them.

According to Der Spiegel, Germans this year will be forced to pay $26 billion for electricity from solar, wind and biogas plants — electricity with a market price of just more than $4 billion. 

And about that saving the planet, the magazine notes:

“On the other hand, when the wind suddenly stops blowing, and in particular during the cold season, supply becomes scarce. That’s when heavy oil and coal power plants have to be fired up to close the gap, which is why Germany’s energy producers in 2012 actually released more climate-damaging carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than in 2011.”

Soon the average three-person household in Germany will be paying about $120 a month for electricity, twice the price in 2000 and with two-thirds of the increase due to new government fees, surcharges and taxes. “But despite those price hikes, government pensions and social welfare payments have not been adjusted,” Der Spiegel says. “As a result, every new fee becomes a threat to low-income consumers.”

And if the solar and wind policy continues in place, the story says, electricity in 2020 will cost more than 50 cents per kilowatt-hour, up 40 percent from today’s price. Nevada residential customers currently pay less than 12 cents per kWh, but with SB123 in place don’t expect that to last long.

Wind turbines off the North Sea island of Borkum are currently rotating without being connected to the grid. The connection cable will probably not be finished until next year. In the meantime, the turbines are being run with diesel fuel to prevent them from rusting. (DPA photo)

7 comments on “Sprechen sie Deutsch? — It translates as a ‘green’ energy boondoggle

  1. Steve says:

    “Australia kicks out Carbon Tax”

    Not yet, but this could be a headline in while. Its considered a big reason the Conservatives won in a landslide. (In Australia the Liberals are the conservative party…. 😀 )

    G’day, mate!

  2. Bruce Feher says:

    We were sold snake oil by the left now we will all have to pay!

  3. Just as it always is the case.


  4. Rincon says:

    The Economist disagrees. The primary reasons for the resurgence of coal in Germany are the low worldwide cost of coal due to lower demand from China and the decreasing use of coal by American utilities which, in turn, is due to low gas prices from fracking. In addition, Germany is reducing it’s use of nuclear power. Renewables cannot expand fast enough to close the gap. The number of new coal plants planned has fallen since 2008, possibly because the low price of coal promises to be a short term phenomonen.

    Solar and wind power are relatively expensive to produce in Germany. If strict economics ran the game, use of coal would be greater.

  5. You must be the worst chess player in the world, Tom… do you not believe that there is a finite amount of fossil fuel in the world? Do you really believe that the amount of pollution put into the air is not having an effect on the world climate? Would you just have us not try and find new solutions to long term energy? There is a reason you were kicked to the curb at the RJ… You are just a moron. Well that is giving the RJ too much credit. I heard they kicked you to the curb because you were an insufferable a$$.

  6. Milty says:

    That’s a great article Rincon posted from the Economist. What a beautiful illustration of how different the goals and outcomes are when government gets involved in something.

    The perfect summation was the line, “If policies work as intended, electricity from renewables will gradually take a larger share of overall generation, and Europe will end up with a much greener form of energy. But at the moment, EU energy policy is boosting usage of the most polluting fuel, increasing carbon emissions, damaging the creditworthiness of utilities and diverting investment into energy projects elsewhere.”

  7. Rincon says:

    Guiding influence is almost always better than a heavy hand.

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