Obama's frou frou energy policy

President Barack Obama Honors Teachers (201001...Image by nasa hq photo via Flickr
NY Times:

The White House is collecting options for a clean energy standard from outside groups, sharpening the president's effort to make low-carbon electricity a key piece of his re-election campaign, if not a passable piece of legislation in the current Congress.

The meetings have solicited input on some of the thorniest elements of President Obama's goal to impose national fuel requirements on electricity providers. Top among them is the policy's potential impact on different regions, some of which have fewer energy resources like wind or nuclear to comply with a national standard.

The administration has heard alternatives. One environmental group is encouraging the White House to consider using energy goals that vary by region. When combined, they would achieve Obama's target of providing 80 percent of the nation's electricity from lower emitting sources by 2035. Big-shouldered areas would carry more of the load.

Without some way to account for varying regional energy supplies, a CES could mean that clusters of coal-based utilities in some states have to buy clean energy credits -- each one worth a small amount of electricity -- from their counterparts in areas that are richer in "clean energy."

Under the program, it's likely that a utility would have to attain credits if it couldn't deliver enough clean energy to meet the standard's target. The opposite is true for utilities that specialize in clean power: They could sell their excess credits for a profit.

"How do you avoid the situation in which ... some [local distribution companies] are basically paying other LDCs right from the very beginning?" asked one participant, who believes parochial energy interests are the biggest challenge to getting a standard passed. "I don't think that strikes anybody as particularly fair."

Obama continues to be out of touch on energy. He is still waiting for magic energy to produce 80 percent of so called clean energy. With current technology it will never happen--never. The three percent we get from wind and solar are at a high cost and are very inefficient. They will not get more efficient with more windmills and collectors. There people need to get over their carbon phobia and learn to adapt to whatever more CO2 brings. I happen to think it will not be as bad as the Henny Penny left predicts. Of course, I like warmer temperatures.

If Obama hopes to make an issue of his energy policy, the Republicans should welcome that challenge and push him to permit more drilling of wells off the coasts of the US and in Alaska. The restrictions on drilling are just nuts. They make no economic sense. We are going to need all the oil and gas we can find for basic transportation and its better to use ours than to buy that of others. Not drilling over the last 30 years has made things much worse for the US and has not resulted in any gains in magic energy.
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