Renewable energy on the Pacific Northwest’s electricity grid has increased substantially over the years, and this is leading to a number of problems.
For the Pacific Northwest, renewable energy expansion truly means wind energy expansion because it is the closest to being market-competitive of all renewable energy sources. Wind power, like hydroelectric power, is clean (i.e., carbon-free in its production), and this remains a large part of policymakers’ attraction to wind. Unfortunately, the negative aspects of wind power are apparent, yet often overlooked.
Ever-increasing wind generation will have a significant impact on the reliability and affordability of electricity in the Pacific Northwest that very well might outweigh any of the claimed environmental benefits.
Todd Wynn is Vice President at Cascade Policy Institute, Oregon’s free market public policy research center. He received his bachelor’s degree in Business Economics from California State University Long Beach and his masters in International and Developmental Economics from University of San Francisco.