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Green crowd wants renewable energy produced at any cost

Referring to the Aug. 12 Business Outlook “Lines Drawn in San Juan Debate, PNM wants gas and nuclear to replace coal, but environmentalists want renewables.”

Of course they do; the environmentalists have a one-track mind and will accept nothing less than wind, solar and biomass to power your electricity.

No matter that it’s unreliable! No matter what it costs!

Cost is not a factor to the greenie crowd; they are going to “save the planet,” and they’ll do whatever they must to accomplish their goal; the end justifies the means.

If you have to pay way more for electricity, that’s OK with them. You have to pay for what you’ve done to the planet, whatever they think that is.

So far in this state, the score is: rate-paying citizens, 0; greenies, out of the ballpark!

They’ve had their way on every issue of renewable energy. In 2004 and 2007 – under the influence of environmentalists, then-Gov. Bill Richardson and Sen. Michael Sanchez – the Legislature passed the Renewable Portfolio Standard.

The RPS requires that utilities will provide 20 percent of renewable power by 2020, to the tune of $2.3 billion to the ratepayers in New Mexico.

Still, they’re not satisfied.

Now they want to replace the two to-be-shuttered coal-fired power plants at the San Juan Generating Station with nothing but renewable energy.

The thing that the green crowd never tells you is that the more renewables that are forced on utilities, the more the utilities have to build “peaking plants” to provide an even flow of electricity to consumers; hence, the extreme cost of renewables.

Not only does PNM have the expense of building wind and solar plants, but then it also has to build back-up plants.

But the green crowd wants to keep that part a deep dark secret, lest you realize how much renewables really cost.

PNM has put forth a reasonable plan for replacing the two San Juan units: Replace the two coal units with a new natural gas generating plant at the same site, plus additional electricity from the Palo Verde nuclear plant in Arizona, and 78 MW from the remaining units at the plant.

But David Van Winkle, chairman for the New Mexico Coalition for Clean Affordable Energy and a board member at the New Energy Economy, says, “We’re concerned, because it kind of seems like PNM has already made some decisions.”

Well, duh, that’s what companies do, make decisions for what’s best for their company and their customers.

But apparently, PNM is supposed to “snap to” and wait for the “word” from the green crowd before proceeding.

Subsidies and electrical generation: Which sources produce results and which simply suck up tax dollars?

Subsidies: nuclear (21 percent), coal (10 percent), solar (8 percent), natural gas (6 percent), wind (42 percent), other (13 percent).

Electricity generation: nuclear (20 percent), coal (45 percent), solar (produces so little doesn’t even show on chart), natural gas (25 percent), wind (2 percent), other (8 percent).

If you’ve been indoctrinated and preached to long enough by radical environmentalism, you might believe that petroleum, gas and fracking are evil. It’s the same old razzle-dazzle from the greenie crowd, but it’s really just rainbows, butterflies and fairy dust.

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