I love environmentalists like the folks from the Renewable Energy Industries Association who just had an opinion piece in the Albuquerque Journal. The author asserts that solar power is the solution to higher electricity costs. That is news to me because those noted right-wingers at the <em>New York Times say that: “The cost of solar thermal electricity, made by using the sun’s heat to boil water and spin a turbine, would be nearly three times that of coal and more than twice that of natural gas. (It would be almost double the cost of wind energy, too.)”
Sounds more, not less expensive to me, but what do I know. And that number doesn’t even include the federal subsidies for solar which cost taxpayers money on the front end (along with higher rates on the back end). Oh, and yes, while PNM is raising rates for electricity consumers in part to maintain infrastructure, solar and wind will need their own investments in infrastructure in order to transport power from solar fields to urban centers.
For the record, we at the Rio Grande Foundation are against ANY subsidies from Washington (or Santa Fe). Utilities and their customers should be able to choose the energy source that works for them, without government interference or manipulation. This includes solar, wind, and any other power source that entrepreneurs can dream up. If government got out of the way, we’d all be better off.