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Index .............................................................................................................................................. 1 1AC................................................................................................................................................. 3 Leadership—Manufacturing Internal.............................................................................................19 Leadership—Competitiveness adv................................................................................................20 Leadership—Innovation key..........................................................................................................24 Leadership—Renewable k/t Econ..................................................................................................26 Leadership—RPS Solves Competitiveness.....................................................................................27 Leadership—Creates Market......................................................................................................... 28 Trade—inherency..........................................................................................................................47 Trade—20% key............................................................................................................................48 Natural Gas 2AC ........................................................................................................................... 49 Blackouts 2AC...............................................................................................................................50 Blackouts Solvency...................................................................................................................... 52 Solvency—A2 RPS BAD.................................................................................................................. 53 Solvency—A2 Inequity...................................................................................................................56 Solvency—A2 Inequity...................................................................................................................57 Solvency—A2 Increases Gov’t.......................................................................................................58 Solvency—2 Tiered Rps Advocate.................................................................................................59 Solvency—20% Best...................................................................................................................... 60 Solvency—A2 Leakage ................................................................................................................. 61 Solvency—RPS solves foreign fuels imports..................................................................................62 Solvency—A2 Wind cancels out other tech...................................................................................63 Solvency—Wind............................................................................................................................. 64 Solvency—A2 Winning & Losing Regions .....................................................................................66 States—A2 States solve now ........................................................................................................69 States—Race to Bottom................................................................................................................ 70 States—A2 State Model.................................................................................................................72 States—uniformity ....................................................................................................................... 73 States—uniformity........................................................................................................................ 75 States—Free Riding.......................................................................................................................77 States—Legal................................................................................................................................78 States—Legal................................................................................................................................80 States—Legal................................................................................................................................82 States—Industry <3......................................................................................................................83 States—ferc key............................................................................................................................ 84 States—PTC Link........................................................................................................................... 86 States—Inefficient **..................................................................................................................... 87 States—Not Enough......................................................................................................................88 States—POUs................................................................................................................................89 States—Uniformity key.................................................................................................................. 90 States—Free Riders.......................................................................................................................91 A2 REC PIC....................................................................................................................................95 A2 Cap and Trade.........................................................................................................................96 A2 Gradual PIC..............................................................................................................................97 A2 Demand PIC.............................................................................................................................99 A2 Don’t Spec Sources CP........................................................................................................... 100 A2 Resource PICS—Fuel Based Definition Best ..........................................................................101 A2 ptc cp..................................................................................................................................... 115 Politics—Controversy..................................................................................................................117 Politics—GOP hates..................................................................................................................... 118 Politics—Plan unpop.................................................................................................................... 120

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2/136 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Price DA—Electricity/Gas........................................................................................................121 A2 Price DA—Must Read.............................................................................................................. 123 A2 Price DA—Ext.........................................................................................................................124 A2 Price DA—A2 Michaels...........................................................................................................125 A2 Price DA—A2 Transmission Costs...........................................................................................127 A2 Price DA—A2 Transmission Costs...........................................................................................129 A2 Price DA—At: spending..........................................................................................................130 A2 Price DA—At: Spending.......................................................................................................... 131 A2 Price DA—electricity rates......................................................................................................132 A2 Fism DA..................................................................................................................................133 A2 T Incentive............................................................................................................................. 135 A2 T In.........................................................................................................................................136 Alex Gulakov, Ishita Chordia, Sam Page, and Harsh Jhaveri

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Observation One is the Status Quo Patchwork of state RPS is a race to the bottom that drives away green investment Sovacool 8 – Research Fellow in the Energy Governance Program at National University of Singapore; Government and

International Affairs Professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute; DoE consultant on the Climate Change Technology Program (Benjamin, June, The Best of Both Worlds, 27 Stan. Envtl. L.J. 397, AG)

state RPS statutes have created a patchwork of inconsistent, often conflicting mandates that distort the market for renewable energy technologies and unintentionally inflate electricity prices. By subjecting an increasingly interstate electric utility market to confusing and sometimes contradictory state regulations, this circus of state-based RPS programs discourages long-term investments and, in some cases, encourages utilities to exploit the inconsistencies. The same is true for climate change. State-by-state action, while providing a muchneeded laboratory of experimentation, is now creating an environment prone to manipulation and free riding by other states and industries. Worse, it appears that even the reduced emissions from some of the most aggressive states with mandatory greenhouse gas caps will be insufficient to stabilize, let alone reduce, the growth in national carbon dioxide emissions. Interactive federalism, in
While their efforts have been laudable,

response, can provide a minimum level of distributive justice and uniformity, preventing the states from compromising on issues of environmental policy. But by refusing to create a "ceiling," interactive federalism would still allow the states to exceed national standards, experiment, innovate, and craft dynamic and unique approaches.

Observation Two is Climate Change Status quo federal policy on energy infrastructure guarantees reliance on coal and natural gas and ensures a massive future increase in emissions and systemic public health costs Shoock 7 – JD Fordham Law (Corey, 12 Fordham J. Corp. & Fin. L. 1011, AG)
Electricity markets in the United States are dominated by fossil fuels, and under current predictions, that fact is unlikely to change. 43 In February 2007 the Energy Information Administration (the "EIA"), a branch of the Department of Energy, released their Annual

Using current trends, the EIA contends that fossil fuels will continue to account for the bulk of American electricity production for the next two and half decades. 45 Currently, 50% of domestic electricity production comes from coal, 46 with an additional 15% from natural gas, 47 and 20% from nuclear sources 48 - making up the overwhelming majority of the domestic electricity market. 49 Projections bear these trends out for the foreseeable future. 50 Renewable energy, by contrast - with the exception of hydro power (e.g. Niagara Falls and the Hoover Dam) 51 - has largely failed to catch on because
Energy Outlook, a projection of electricity production to 2030. 44 of the high costs associated with production and transmission, 52 variable output, 53 and the perception that a long-term market does not exist for these energies. 54

Wind, photovoltaic (solar), geothermal, and biomass are the leading nonhydro sources of electricity currently available in the United States. 55 [*1018] Combined, however, they account for only about 2.5% of the nation's electric power sector consumption. 56 Unless the government changes how energy production costs are reflected, the status quo ought to endure for fossil fuels and renewables alike. Under current federal pricing measurements, coal is the least expensive source of
electricity 57 (the EIA does not compile comparable production price statistics for renewables, but the International Energy Agency estimates that utility-scale wind energy costs in the United States are close to that of natural gas in "high quality wind regimes"). 58 According to the EIA, the cost of coal at electric generating plants in 2006 averaged $ 1.70 in nominal dollars per million British thermal units [*1019] ("Btu"). 59 Petroleum and gas, the other fossil fuels that are used in electricity production, do not compare with coal's low cost. 60 Furthermore,

while the cost of production of coal-based electricity has in fact gone up considerably in the last ten years, 61 the EIA does not project any rise between now and 2030 to be more dramatic than 0.1% in real dollars per year. 62 Thus, there is no reason to expect the status quo of the electricity market to change without outside action. Since coal supplies in the United States are plentiful, 63 limiting coal-burning will not reduce dependence on foreign sources of energy. 64 The casus belli for such outside action is the fact that the government's pricing figures neglect to factor in the full costs of fossil fuel production, including environmental and health costs that are not passed onto consumers directly in their utility bill. 65 For example, utility companies do not have to account for the consequences of approximately six billion metric tons per year of carbon dioxide emissions, a

25 billion metric tons of C02 in 2003. 80 Coal also causes nearly 554. all after 20. a 20 percent RPS would reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 434 million metric tons by 2020—a reduction of 15 percent below “business as usual” levels. ground subsidence causes surface collapses. nitrogen oxides. 87 Utilities emissions is the key internal link to global warming—only a federal RPS is large enough to reverse this Sovacool 7 (Benjamin and Christopher Cooper.304 The Common Purpose Institute estimates that renewable energy technologies could offset as much as 0. the health care costs caused by plant emissions total an estimated $ 160 billion annually. often generated from fossil fuel-fired power plants. By 2005. 68 While coal-based power is seen to be the least expensive source of electricity on the market today. cadmium. meaning 630. carbon dioxide. causing seemingly immeasurable damage and destruction to public and private property. Nuclear energy is not much of an improvement.200 cases of chronic bronchitis. resulting in respiratory problems in humans). 70 The indirect costs associated with the production of electricity from coal are simply staggering. and particulate matter. proximity to coal-burning facilities increases the likelihood that a person becomes one of the 23. almost every state in country was home to at least one power plant with significant C02 emissions. Fossilfueled power plants in the U. 72 During processing and utilization. to global climate change and do virtually nothing to end U. but substantially. seeps out during the coal-burning process and travels either directly through ground water and airborne particles. 66 Nor is a financial charge indexed to other consequences of fossil fuel burning. Renewing America. of all U.000 pounds of mercury into the air 75 while creating another 81.303 Because uranium enrichment consumes so much electricity derived from fossil fuels. emitted 2. and public health. and 38. even in small doses. Data collected from one uranium enrichment company alone revealed that it takes a 100. at three times as carbon intense as solar and 20 times as carbon intensive as wind. 86 and pneumoconiosis in coal miners (also known as "black lung disease"). wildlife. carbon monoxide. and global climate change. or indirectly through the food chain [*1021] (often through fish). ozone. Natural gas fares little better. 84 Other grisly consequences from living near coal burning include a high rate of stomach cancer. air and water sources are contaminated. the more than 600 coal-burning plants in the United States 74 emit more than 98. producing far beyond its proportional market share.301 Put simply. In 2004.S. and other heavy metals. 77 That mercury. http://www. 81 Not surprisingly. almost 90 percent of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions were energy-related. iron and steel production. 71 During the mining stage land is permanently damaged. or the equivalent to taking nearly 71 million automobiles off the road. dependence on foreign oil. with the electric utility industry outpacing all other sectors (including transportation) with 38 percent of national carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.000 pounds of mercury is released in pre-burning "cleaning" procedures .000 asthma attacks. methane. AG) Yet carbon-intensive fuels continue to dominate electricity generation in the United States.” Reprocessing and enriching uranium requires a substantial amount of electricity. to humans.600 deaths every year attributed to power plant pollution. 73 Every year. sulfur dioxide. industries.megawatt power plant running for 550 hours to produce the amount of enriched uranium needed to fuel a 1.000 pounds. a twenty-five-year increase of about 30%.000 babies a year born in the United States (out of 4 million) are at risk for severe neurological consequences as a result of gestational mercury poisoning.49 tons of carbon dioxide emissions per every MWh of generation. volatile organic compounds.0 DDI 2008 4/136 Strange & Serrano Lab total that will increase to nearly eight billion metric tons per year by 2030. coal is by far the largest producer of these emissions. despite recent claims by the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) that nuclear power is “the Clean Air Energy. 82 each death taking an average of fourteen years off normal life expectancy.newenergychoices. two of the nation’s most polluting coal plants (in Ohio and Indiana) produce electricity exclusively for the enrichment of uranium.000 pounds of mercury released in a Texas county. many nuclear power plants contribute indirectly. 16. 85 autism in children (for every 1. and workers can be injured or killed. 69 the market dynamics that favor coal are substantially flawed. and other particulate matter [*1020] wreak havoc on human and natural habitats alike by causing things like acid rain.305 . 67 Among fuels used for electricity generation.200 non-fatal heart attacks each year. urban ozone (caused primarily by nitrous oxide emissions. According to data compiled by the Union of Concerned Scientists. coal plants are around 10 times more carbon intensive than solar and more than 40 times more carbon intensive than wind.302 According to the Washington Post.000 megawatt reactor (of the most efficient design currently available) for one year. more than 10 times the amount of C02 compared to the next-largest emitter.000 pounds of mercury pollution from fly ash and scrubber sludge 76.totaling 200. along with arsenic. The International Atomic Energy Agency estimates that when direct and indirect carbon emissions are included.S. autism rates rose 17%). 78 Mercury. Increases in the emission of sulfur. heavy metal and acid is given off.pdf. 83 All told. electricity generation is— by substantial margins—the single largest contributor of the pollutants responsible for global warming.RPS AFF 1. is converted easily through human metabolism into the neurotoxin methylmercury.S.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. and nitrogen oxides are emitted into the atmosphere. 79 The result of the contamination is that one out of every six women of childbearing age may have enough of a concentration of mercury to permanently damage a developing fetus.

RPS AFF 1. In a world of degraded American legitimacy.com. [insert more if needed] Observation Three is Competitiveness US international credibility is rapidly declining—federal action that reverses the Bush administration’s precedent is critical to regain legitimacy Ikenberry 4 – Professor of Global Justice and Geopolitics. unique wildlife and poor soils. Energy sector’s uniquely key to technological and industrial leadership . a new administration needs to undertake urgent steps to repair its social and political capital abroad. the Norse colonies in southern Greenland and the Akkadian civilisation. Georgetown (John. Bold and visible gestures will be required. human history is littered with examples of civilisations that have collapsed because of their inability to adjust to environmental change such as the Mayans in Meso-America." said Steffen. "The planet is already amid a "human-induced mass extinction event" which is defining a new geological age known as the Anthropocene. the best course of action was to mitigate climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible. which is similar to the mass extinction event which wiped out the dinosaurs and other species 65 million years ago. legitimacy is an intrinsic aspect of power. director of the Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies at Canberra's Australian National University. it should now pursue a follow-up initiative and commit to its own plan for reducing the emission of greenhouse gases. Over the longer term--and in a thousand different ways-countries will take steps to separate themselves from the United States. AG) THE BUSH Administration's disregard for legitimacy has had devastating consequences for America's standing in the world. The National Interest. AG) A leading environmental scientist has suggested that an unprecedented climatic change is creating a new geological age. DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab http://in. the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment published a report on the changes in species diversity and found the current rate of species loss is higher than the background rate inferred in the fossil record.au quoted Steffen as saying. other countries are more reluctant to cooperate with the United States." Given the damage done to American legitimacy. it would have been unthinkable for a German chancellor to rescue his bid for re-election by insisting that Berlin stand up to Washington. Washington provoked considerable ill will abroad by turning its back on the Kyoto Protocol." he added. Liberal Realism. From the perspective of liberal realism. Lexis.com/ani/20080331/r_t_ani_sc/tsc-new-geological-age-similar-to-65-mil-f32bc39.yahoo. had left 75 per cent of the world's fisheries exploited or depleted. but candidates in other countries--Spain. "This rapid rate in the loss of species diversity is similar in intensity to the event around 65 million years ago which wiped out the dinosaurs and other species. it is to exercise American power in a manner that continues to attract the support of others. Another major reason for concern is the fact that by damning nearly all of the world's major rivers.html.news. Brazil and South Korea--have thrived by distancing themselves from the United States. Instead." news. Not only did Gerhard Schroder do so in 2002. mammals and amphibians are currently threatened with extinction.0 5/136 The impact is extinction ANI 8 (3/31. According to Steffen. During the heyday of American legitimacy amid the Cold War. Successive American presidents have found ways to do so because they realized that to legitimate American power was to turn coercion and domination into authority and consent." he said. "The human impact has been pronounced in Australia." said Professor Will Steffen. In Jean-Jacques Rousseau's famous formulation from The Social Contract: "The strongest is never strong enough to be always master. According to the scientist. To care about legitimacy is not to cede American power to the UN or any other party. The country that for decades was seen to be at the forefront of progressive change is now regarded as a threat to the international system. unless he transforms strength into right and obedience into duty. "With no one sure what the tipping point was. to resist its leadership and to organize their regions of the world in opposition to Washington. in 2005. which was located in what is now Syria. "Another 10-30 per cent of birds. due to the highly variable climate. New geological age similar to 65 million year old mass extinction event. particularly among Europeans.

0 6/136 Kammen 07. In fact. The Dark Ages followed Rome's collapse. Cuba. Without U. During the Cold War. from the international order U. human health protection. In this testimony I highlight the key finding that while a continuation of business as usual energy choices will result in socially. politically. Afghanistan and Iraq stand in contrast to the UN's inability to save the people of Darfur or even to conduct any military campaign to realize the goals of its charter. Iran. primacy--and the bandwagoning effect--has also given us extensive influence in international politics. Hitler succeeded the order established at Versailles. American-led wars in Kosovo.both 'high technology' and ones that transform 'blue collar labor' into 'green collar' opportunities. including asymmetric strategies such as targeting communication and intelligence satellites upon which the United States depends. regional. Doing so allows the United States to operate with allies outside of the UN. A growing number of state. where it can be stymied by opponents.S. a change of regime in Caracas. Khan proliferation network are in sharp relief to the typically toothless attempts by the UN to halt proliferation. Testimony before Senate Environment & Public Works Committee. Of course. and other members of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. Renewable energy systems are more often local than imported due to the weight of biomass resources and the need for operations and maintenance. stabilize Afghanistan. In Defense of Primacy. allowing the United States to shape the behavior of states and international institutions. primacy creates. assuredly. S. resort to other mechanisms of challenging the United States. and economic development for the nation.S. states have taken the vital step of adopting minimum levels of renewable energy requirements. power behind it. power. states in adopting a Low Carbon Fuel Standard (Kammen. a robust monetary regime. power. and national economies are assuming leadership positions for a clean. But China may not be confident those strategies would work.Empirical Lessons Expanding the use of renewable energy is not only good for our energy self-sufficiency and the environment. Minnesota (Bradley. such as toward Iran. In the United States several states have embarked on significant climate protection efforts.S.S. Retrenchment proponents seem to think that the current system can be maintained without the current amount of U. For three of the "Gang of Five" cases--Venezuela. and to begin to move toward a diverse set of economically and environmentally sustainable transportation choices. China is clearly the most important of these states because it is a rising great power.RPS AFF 1. The goal of a Low Carbon Fuel Standard is to reduce the greenhouse impact of fossil fuel emissions.S. all of which have made significant commitments to a green economy. Hearing Chair. They are the "Gang of Five": China. the motivation to invest in solutions to climate change can be simply that a green economy can also be exceedingly vibrant. but New Delhi is friendly to Washington. 2007). AG) U. Scholars and statesmen have long recognized the irenic effect of power on the anarchic world of international politics. Such influence comes in many forms." Consequently. Everything we think of when we consider the current international free trade. Denmark. countries like India.S. In that they are dead wrong and need to be reminded of one of history's most significant lessons: Appalling things happen when international orders collapse. Kapadia and Fripp. and all are seeing job growth and rapidly expanding export opportunities. and so it is likely to refrain from testing the United States directly for the foreseeable future because China's power benefits. and half of U. it is important to note what those good things are. You can count with one hand countries opposed to the United States. growing democratization--is directly linked to U. US Fed News September 25) (Jhaveri) DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Senator Barrie Sanders. China proclaims that it will. regime that is the source of the problem.S. energy economy. Director of Renewable and Appropriate Energy Lab (RAEL). Only the "Gang of Five" may be expected to consistently resist the agenda and actions of the United States. peace and stability have been great benefits of an era where there was a dominant power--Rome. As country and western great Ral Donner sang: "You don't know what you've got (until you lose it). Indeed. Leadership solves every impact scenario Thayer 6 – PolSci Professor. Job Growth in a Green Economy . 2004). I appreciate your invitation to appear before you today. North Korea and Venezuela. power. it also has a significant positive impact on employment. The combination of economic competitiveness and environmental protection is a clear result from a systematic approach to investing in climate solutions. one of which is America's ability to create coalitions of like-minded states to free Kosovo. Tehran or Havana could very well reorient relations. an economy built around a suite of low-carbon technologies can be resistant to price shocks as well as secure against supply disruptions as well as inclusive of diverse socioeconomic groups. U. Iran. The quiet effectiveness of the PSI in dismantling Libya's WMD programs and unraveling the A. In addition to ensuring the security of the United States and its allies. The National Interest. and security issues that face our nation and the planet. Iceland Germany. These 'early actors' are reaping the economic benefits of their actions. invade Iraq or to stop proliferation through the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI). Q. I am particularly appreciative your inspiring efforts to develop a comprehensive approach to environmental quality. My students and I have examined the observed job growth in a number of technology sectors (Kammen. But even Beijing is intimidated by the United States and refrains from openly challenging U. for example. increasing respect for human rights. if necessary. American primacy within the international system causes many positive outcomes for Washington and the leadership reduced friction among many states that . the liberal order created by the United States will end just as order-world. A new wave of job growth . I am grateful for the opportunity today to speak with you on the energy. Nov/Dec. The first has been a more peaceful world.S. do not agree with all policy choices made by the United States. Among the global leaders are Brazil.S. low carbon. Illinois and other U. Japan. as we shall see. the country itself is not intrinsically anti-American. Britain or the United States today. THROUGHOUT HISTORY. Spain. Clean energy systems and energy efficiency investments also contribute directly to energy security and to domestic job growth versus off-shore migration. Cuba--it is an anti-U. On the vitally important issue of transportation a set of European nations have followed the lead of California. climate. and environmentally costly and destructive climate change. The other states are far weaker than China. (Daniel.

Reuters highlights that US Trade Representative Susan Schwab said that an earlier version of the EU plans seemed to be an excuse to close the European market and amounted to something like protectionism.html . France’s leader Nicolas Sarkozy has been banging this drum for a while. American primacy helps keep a number of complicated relationships aligned-between Greece and Turkey. India and Pakistan. Peter Mandelson.com/pubs/4419. Today. EIA's May 2004 .A. will not create the necessary market forces to effectuate the large-scale reductions in CO2 necessary for the United States to achieve a significant reduction in its greenhouse gas emissions. State RPS legislation. would establish a system of tradable emission allowances and related emissions reporting requirements to tackle global warming. solar. most recently by energy minister Malcolm Wicks saying today the government was “against any measures which might look like trade barriers” and warning that some in Europe “could use this as a kind of secret weapon. http://blogs. Barroso also appears to be picking a fight with his own trade commissioner. however. National legislation is essential.pur. and sulfur hexafluoride. and Joseph Lieberman. most notably France and West Germany. but particularly war's worst form: does war's likelihood. the most comprehensive global warming legislation to date was defeated by a surprisingly narrow margin of only seven votes. such as in Darfur. making no effort to reduce their emissions. National RPS sends a signal against protectionism—this is vital to avoid a transatlantic trade war Fontaine 4 – co-chairs the Energy. the notes for speech delivered by Schwab last week contains the statement.16 Fourteen states have adopted renewable portfolio standards that require electricity suppliers to derive an increasing percentage of supply from renewable energy generation sources. “Countries that behave like stowaways hitching a free ride. telling Nature before he was elected last year last year. South Korea and Japan..com/news/thegreatbeyond/2008/01/climate_change_trade_war. and geothermal. AG) In the vacuum created by the administration's withdrawal from the Kyoto Protocol. Environmental & Public Utility Practice Group of the Cozen O'Connor law firm. former EPA lawyer (Peter. as it were. Observation Four is Trade Perception of a lack a national US energy policy is pushing Europe towards trade sanctions Cressey 8 – journalist for Nature magazine (Daniel. a number of states have stepped forward with legislative and policy initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. biomass. president of the European Commission.. said he would be ready to force companies outside the EU to buy carbon allowances to ensure that companies inside were not disadvantaged by Europe’s tougher emissions targets (speech). sponsored by Sens. should not continue to benefit from the competitive industrial advantage this gives them. 139). Appliance rebates. Israel and Egypt. More worryingly. hydrofluorocarbons. This is not to say it fulfills Woodrow Wilson's vision of ending all war. Indonesia and Australia. nitrous oxide. Global Warming: The Gathering Storm. R-Ariz.RPS AFF 1.0 a Pax Americana reduce DDI 2008 7/136 Strange & Serrano Lab were historical antagonists. While this apparently went down well with the audience (of European businessmen) it hasn’t gone down so well with America. http://www. In the current economic climate any excuse to shore up their own country’s economy at the expense of someone else’s is not going to be overlooked by politicians. Mandelson is on record as saying the restrictions are not the way forward (BBC)*. The Climate Stewardship Act of 2003 (S. great power wars. AG) Europe and the US could be headed for a trade war over climate change. “The unilateral imposition of restrictions can lead to retaliation. as amended by S. In October 2003. methane. and dramatically impact economic growth and markets worldwide – while accomplishing nothing or worse when it comes to advancing environmental objectives. perfluorocarbons. 2028. The bill would cover 75 percent of direct greenhouse gas emissions in the United States and would reduce carbon emissions to year-2000 emission levels by 2015.nature. John McCain.” The US approach has also been backed by the UK. such as wind. D-Conn. In a speech yesterday José Barroso. The bill covers six greenhouse gases: carbon dioxide. Wars still occur where Washington's interests are not seriously threatened. transition assistance. to bring about protectionism” (listen to Wicks on BBC or read his comments on Reuters).” However Barroso’s forthright speech – made in the face of British opposition – represents something of a ratcheting up of the rhetoric level. 1/28. and other transfer payments that would be made by a newly created Climate Change Credit Corporation-a non-profit organization created to be funded by emission allowance sales-would significantly mitigate the increase in average household energy expenses.cfm.

"God did not bestow all products upon all parts of the earth. Peace on Earth. emails. AG) Advocates of free trade have long argued that its benefits are not merely economic. Free trade also encourages people and nations to live in peace with one another. By changing this single assumption from EIA's analysis MIT found that monthly costs to the average household would be only $15 to $20. that all men might be able to have common enjoyment of the fruits of the earth. In the more than half a century since the end of World War II.4 cents per kilowatt-hour to 6. The century of relative world peace from 1815 to 1914 was marked by a dramatic expansion of international trade. the only way to gain access is through military conquest. And so He called commerce into being. faxes and face-to-face meetings are an integral part of commercial relations between people of different nations. MIT also studied the bill but assumed-based on experience from the Acid Rain Program-that sources would make substantial early reductions in non-CO2 emissions that would be banked for later sale.1 in 2025 (about $200). When the door to trade is open. Free trade makes it more profitable for people of one nation to produce goods and services for people of another nation than to conquer them. no significant fuel-shift to natural gas (despite this market's historic unpredictability). and avoid the risk of a damaging trade war with the EU. Also. The risk of trade sanctions by America's largest trading partners due to the failure of the United States to control CO2 emissions should be a real concern to U. armies will. By promoting communication across borders.RPS AFF 1. It is also terrible for business. In this way. the United States would blunt any effort by the EU to impose trade sanctions on U. it will largely cede control over how the rules implementing Kyoto are written and risk trade sanctions by trading partners seeking to reduce the disparity in production costs. International trade creates a network of human contacts. policy-makers. from 6. goods. no market penetration of new low-emission technologies (despite billions of federal R&D spending). When the door is closed. To avoid this negative outcome. regain its credibility in the global deliberations over how to combat global warming. If the United States continues to resist global pressure to reduce its CO2 emissions. This human interaction encourages tolerance and respect between people of different cultures (if not toward protectionist politicians). Free Trade for Men.0 8/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab analysis of the bill found that allowance costs will fall largely on the electricity sector and would be passed on to consumers. electricity prices will increase due to the internalization of the costs of the cap and trade system. such programs are likely to continue. By adopting some form of national legislation that begins to internalize the costs of global warming. Interdependence prevents conflict escalation Griswold 98 – CATO Institute Center for Trade Policy Studies (Daniel. trade increases understanding and reduces suspicion toward people in other countries. and from 6. the rise of protectionism and the downward spiral of global trade in the 1930s aggravated the underlying hostilities that propelled Germany and Japan to make war on their neighbors. As the 19th century Frenchman Frederic Bastiat said. to the end that men might cultivate a social relationship because one would have need of the help of another." Open trade makes war a less appealing option for governments by raising its costs. disrupting international commerce and inflicting even greater hardship on the mass of citizens.S. at least one side was dominated by a nation or nations that did not pursue a policy of free trade. investment and human migration. http://www. war not only means the destruction of life and property. . illuminated by the example of Great Britain.S. To a nation committed to free trade.0 in 2020 (about $108). Phone calls. In contrast.8 in 2010 (about $33 per household per month). In every one of the two dozen or so wars between nations fought since 1945. unrealistically.7 to 8. Ancient writers. The reduction of global warming gas emissions called for under the Kyoto Protocol will increase electricity prices and therefore the cost of goods. a nation's citizens can gain access to goods and resources outside their borders by offering in exchange what they themselves can produce relatively well. understood the link between trade and international harmony. Free trade raises the cost of war by making nations more economically interdependent.html. EIA assumed. The fourth-century writer Libanius declared in his Orations (III). but distributed His gifts over different regions. much like the Acid Rain Trading Program. no wars have been fought between two nations that were outwardly oriented in their trade policies. and will further reduce the bill's costs by independently contributing toward the bill's modest goal of reducing CO2 emissions to year 2000 levels by 2015." History demonstrates the peaceful influence of trade. Even under the relatively modest goals of the McCain Lieberman bill. "When goods cannot cross borders. the United States should pursue a more pragmatic middle path that confronts the problem of global warming by laying out the necessary domestic framework and economic incentives to create a domestic CO2 emissions market that produces efficient CO2 reductions. EIA predicts average electricity prices will increase under the bill from 6. America can develop new technologies.7 to 9.org/dailys/12-31-98. Obviously.cato. expounding what we now call the Universal Economy Doctrine. and no continued federal and state emission reduction programs. no matter where produced. The EIA analysis points out one fundamental conclusion.

39 In areas outside . however. each of these efforts failed. ebsco.6. or offshore wind along the East Coast. including solar. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission should administer tradable renewable energy credits to facilitate this goal. States. A federal RPS floor. In the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1977. jurisdictional overlap is not only possible. The 1990s. saw a turnaround in which industry interest groups are advocating federal preemption to eliminate aggressive state standards. however. a proposal was advanced that would have overridden the states’ ability to set more stringent zoning authority for the permitting of oil refineries and utilities. Environment 49. It may be that a federal floor will only set reduction targets out to 2020. for example. California has requested and been granted more than 40 exceptions to EPA emission standards. might be a requirement for retail electricity providers to meet a 15 percent renewable target by 2020 or 2025. states could add their own preferences to meet state-based goals. AG) a strong case can be made for federal governance to preempt state initiatives that have proliferated on the RPS and climate change fronts. Similarly. federal preemption was prompted by the desire to impose stronger federal programs than states themselves would impose. Another bill would have waived all forms of liability for industries involved in the production and sale of antifreeze coolants containing benzoate. that is. professor Kirsten Engel has noted that in the 1970s. The answer to this conundrum is to specifically allow for a multi-jurisdictional system of authority over RPS and climate change. Observation Six is the Fed is Key A preemptive federal RPS is inevitable—state action will spur watered-down ceiling caps that curb progress—our plan serves as floor preemption that sets a minimum but encourages state-level innovation Sovacool 7 (Benjamin and Jack Barkenbus. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). while some states will want to go on record as requiring emission cuts of at least 60 percent by 2050. University of Michigan professor of public policy Barry Rabe and his colleagues have noted that the decision to pursue action at the federal or state level need not be perceived as an either/or proposition. biomass. but there has been talk that a federal RPS might include nuclear power and clean coal as “renewable” options. This could be accomplished by establishing a federal “floor” without a “ceiling”. a rule that would impose requirements on each and every state but that would still allow states to exceed the federal minimum standards imposed. and it harkens back to a time in the 1960s and 1970s when federal preemption meant requiring all states to meet a minimum level of requirements. wind. all other states were given the opportunity to adopt California’s standards in the future or remain subject to the EPA standards. small-scale hydroelectric in the Pacific Northwest. Such a concern is not merely academic.S. In 2004. The 1967 amendments to the Clean Air Act of 1963 is an example as it allowed California to establish vehicle air pollution emission standards that were more stringent than those developed by the U. lowest– common denominator national standard in their place. could be permitted to raise the requirement to 20–25 percent within their own jurisdictions should they wish to do so.36 At least three of these efforts have surfaced in Congress during the past three years. however. whether they want to provide special incentives to promote solar photovoltaics in the Southeast. and the system has not been overly burdensome to automakers. but may even be preferable. a prospect that not only goes against common sense but strains credulity as well. The concern. And an amendment to a 2005 appropriations bill prohibited states from attempting to duplicate California’s efforts to create more protective automobile emissions standards. 38 In other words.RPS AFF 1. Necessary but Insufficient. University of Arizona law For all of the reasons just cited. some of the most aggressive and meaningful state programs will be preempted.0 DDI 2008 9/136 Strange & Serrano Lab Plan: The United States federal government should establish a gradual national Renewable Portfolio Standard requiring that by 2020 regulated electric utilities in the United States meet a baseline of twenty percent of their demand through qualifying alternative energy sources. and geothermal. The federal floor might also consist of a standard set of renewables for inclusion. is that through the process of reaching federal consensus. leaving a watered-down. greenhouse gas emission reduction targets could consist of a federal minimum as well as an additional state target. rather than a more recent preoccupation with eliminating all the state regulations that overlap. A multi-jurisdictional framework can accommodate these differing goals and time frames.37 Thankfully. Once the minimum federal requirements are met through these renewables.

But. and experimental programs. aggressive. A consensus-based federal system would produce a meaningful and achievable regime eliminating the “free rider” phenomenon that now exists.” “savings clauses. Without uniformity.0 10/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab of environmental regulation.42 Such flexibility in terms of a federal RPS or climate change statute would ensure that the states can continue to innovate while also mandating that all states move forward in promoting renewable energy and addressing climate change. the value of such commodities will automatically reach zero once the RPS and greenhouse gas target levels have been met. both intentionally and unintentionally. The generator's credits are "imprinted" with a code that indicates that the credit will satisfy State A's RPS only. THE RENEWABLES PORTFOLIO STANDARD A Practical Guide. The impressive growth in state-based RPS and climate change initiatives utilizing these policy mechanisms is testimony.RPS AFF 1. Regulation under a uniform accounting system by the FERC is a precondition to a standardized market that allows innovation and location-specific innovation among the states Hempling 1 – Executive Director of the National Regulatory. most of all. Ultimately. the federal government has a long history of promoting minimum national standards that the states can exceed. http://www.43 They also have the tendency to be self-expiring (or “selfsunsetting”).95 A national accounting system would have significant value to states because the lack of regional authorities makes it difficult for states to work together to establish and fund a uniform regional verification system. Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. states wanting to do more than what the federal program entails would be permitted to do so.65 and Oregon $7. including RPS depends on whether all states in the relevant electricity market use a single complianceaccounting system. which would supply the information when they apply for credits.naruc. Each state's policies need not be uniform just because a single credit-accounting system is used. the relevant region for the generation attribute accounting system to cover would be the physical trading region in which the state exists as well as the trading region(s) in which eligible generators may be located. Two examples: • A generator has been Ensure policies. The Fair Labor Standards Act.adds further complexity. with generators and retailers conducting business in more than one state. Accommodate state-specific policies.com/associations/1773/files/rps. but the generator does not qualify for State B's RPS. and in the area of brownfields regulation. Conclusion The RPS and greenhouse gas caps are excellent policy mechanisms: unlike other policy incentives such as tax credits and subsidies.pdf. qualified as eligible by State A for its RPS. these tools minimize government intervention and rely on the efficiency of the market—instead of continual monetary disbursements or political salience—to dictate how utilities. The need to coordinate neighboring regional systems -. one would expect to see their results gradually incorporated into the federal program. Accounting system uniformity is necessary because most states draw their electricity from a regional market.44 A multijurisdictional approach to these issues would create a national system for the first time requiring all states to participate in a harmonized system that would include the trading of RECs and nationally certified carbon offsets.80. 96 The information that is carried in each credit could be left up to generators.40 Other federal “floors. if information is lacking. industries. for instance. and more recently in the Toxic Substances Control Act.assuming regional systems emerge -. Federal preemption would not be permitted to snuff out these “laboratories of democracy” that wish to go forward with bold. and the sentencing of hate crimes. drug safety. however.41 Federal environmental law generally allows states to enact standards stricter than federal laws as reflected in the Clean Water Act.” and “safety valves” have been established in the areas of health care insurance. Perhaps new Democratic control of Congress will overcome objectives at the federal level. and where those benefits can be provided by generators located outside the physical electricity trading region. the . however. The integrity of most states'94 generation attribute policies.15 per hour and preempts Kansas’s miserly rate of $2. but that remains to be seen. It is particularly important to coordinate regional verification systems when state RPS eligibility requirements are based on whether generators provide benefits to the state. AG) the integrity of verification systems. to woeful inaction at the federal level. Under a multi-jurisdictional framework.affiniscape.65 but is surpassed by 38 other states that have set their own laws higher than the federal statute—with Connecticut offering $7. In this case. establishes a national minimum wage of $5. for example. When utilizing RECs and tradable permits. If these state programs are successful over time. state experience will yield profuse results only if it inspires a national standard that motivates the country to truly promote renewable energy and fight climate change. An electronic credit system can (and should) be designed such that the tradable credits issued to each generator carry whatever identifying information is required by all states that participate in the system. Research Institute (Scott and Nancy Rader. and consumers promote renewable energy and fight climate change. civil rights. generation attributes could be double counted. or at least use and coordinate accounting systems that are compatible. Federal Insecticide Fungicide and Rodenticide Act.

BioCycle 44.98 To ensure that a national RPS does not end up acting as a ceiling on renewables development. reducing each user's individual cost. Instead. an RPS operates on the flip side of the market. and many have begun to merge and consolidate to maximize profits and deal with the perceived challenges of restructuring . the proposed mergers of MidAmerican Energy Holdings with Pacificorp and Constellation Energy with FLP serve as prominent examples of this trend. Such a clause would enable states to build upon the federal requirement with their own RPS requirements. As long as a single credit system is used. coordinated set of regional credit systems were adopted. ebsco. and operate numerous state. AG) The elimination of PUCHA in 2005 removed the geographical restrictions that limited public utility holding companies to single.0 11/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab generator's credits would not be usable by retailers in states that require the missing information. All credits could carry both fuel source and emissions information. State Policies Set Mandates for Renewable Energy. Using the states alone to promote renewable energy technologies endorses action at the improper scale since electricity flows across state lines. [19] More utilities operate across state lines. These costs would also be spread over all users.RPS AFF 1.or regional-level systems. the fixed costs would be incurred only once. A national credit accounting system would create benefits beyond the prevention of double-counting of renewable energy and other generation attributes: it would reduce costs to retailers. guaranteeing demand for . Such preemption could be implied. For example. While A federal RPS better matches the post-PUCHA interstate power landscape.2. Constitution. unless system costs are covered by the federal government. it should include a "savings clause" specifying that the federal RPS is a floor upon which states may build. 97 A "user" could be each state or each retailer using the system.10. in State D. Reduce costs to retailers. Federal action is favored by industry because it allows interstate renewable development Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. (At least some of these cost savings would also be achieved if a uniform. and they will be used in accordance with each state's policy. state RPS policies could be challenged as violating the Supremacy Clause of the U. and/or other variances from the federal policy. Reduce costs through economies of scale. IgentaConnect. Energy & Environment 19.R. which may contain different eligibility criteria. credits will only be used once.96 Note that many differences between state RPS policies would be of no consequence simply because a single accounting system is used. Each state would then use reports produced by the system administrator to determine whether retailers operating within their jurisdiction have complied with their generation attribute policies.S.. The Energy Policy Act of 2005 also accelerated the regionalization of the industry by authorizing more interstate compacts and promoting interstate planning and cooperation. but makes little sense now. Using a national credit system would avoid the need to design. only the fuel source information is used. or if some retailers are exempt under one state's policy but not under another's. build. no administrative complications would be introduced if one state's RPS is a product-based requirement and another's is company-based.97 II. Using individual states as a crucible for innovations in electricity generation and marketing may have made sense when PUHCA limited the size and geographic scope of utility holding companies. Allow States to Add State RPS Requirements to Any National RPS If Congress adopts a national RPS policy. on the grounds that Congress intended to preempt state regimes. AG) An RPS is a market-based policy mechanism that requires utilities to produce a certain percentage of renewable electricity as a portion of their total output. low-cost accounting system for retailers to use when complying with state generation attribute policies. integrated systems. and thus promote competition by establishing a uniform. even where there is no direct conflict between the federal and state systems. Each state would need to work with the administrator of the credit system to ensure that its policies will be accommodated by the system. A Matter of Stability and Equity. Only RPS can stimulate market demand—it’s a precondition to other effective financial incentives Drabick 3 – Environmental and Energy Study Institute (J.) The fixed costs associated with the ongoing operation of the system should also be significantly less the sum of the fixed costs of operating several systems. While tax credits stimulate supply by lowering the cost to producers of renewable electricity. Without such a savings clause. C-3 • State C requires that emissions be disclosed to consumers in an "electricity facts" label. they are still pending approval. but. but State D requires that only fuel sources be disclosed in labels. p 38. a savings clause is required. higher obligations.

This allows the use of the most cost-effective and appropriate technology in a given region.0 DDI 2008 12/136 Strange & Serrano Lab renewable electricity. thereby stimulating supply. such as solar water heating. renewable electricity suppliers will struggle to grow if demand remains stagnant. these policies enable the entire family of renewable electricity technologies to gain a foothold into the market for the benefit of consumers and utilities alike. Interconnection and net metering provisions complete the equation. a utility that fails to meet its portfolio requirement is allowed to purchase renewable electricity credits from an alternate utility that has exceeded its portfolio requirement. The price of the credits is determined by the market. can provide significant economic benefits for residential consumers and small businesses that invest in those technologies. whether it is photovoltaics in the Southwest or wind in the Great Plains. Well-designed RPS standards also include credit trading provisions that ensure added flexibility and can provide economic benefits for residential consumers and small businesses. enabling renewable electricity producers to seamlessly connect to the grid at no extra cost. Moreover. Together. RPS requirements also tend to be graduated.RPS AFF 1. Supply and demand-side policies are intricately linked and of equal importance for developing renewable energy in the United States. While an RPS stimulates market demand. . Finally. One of the major advantages of an RPS is its flexibility. Whereas demand for renewable electricity will go unfulfilled without adequate supply. An RPS allows a utility to fulfill its renewable electricity percentage requirement with any of the renewable technologies. trading provisions that allocate credits for electricity offset technologies. thereby lowering the cost of acquiring new renewable energy sources. Under credit trading. and helps develop a diversified portfolio of energy resources. RPS standards are ideally suited to work in tandem with the other vital renewable electricity policies. enabling cost-effective decision-making on the part of utility operators. which include production tax credits and interconnection and net metering provisions. increasing incrementally over a given period of time rather than mandating a single large market transformation. This allows utilities to integrate renewable electricity into their long-term investment cycle. production tax credits provide incentives for utilities or individuals to invest in the up-front capital costs of renewable electricity facilities.

According to NEMS. the EIA assumes that the federal production tax credit will expire as scheduled on Dec.9 GW in Nevada.S. Pennsylvania. I.4 GW in California. EIA expects base-load fossil fuel generation to continue to have low operating costs compared to current renewable technologies. AG) With so much state-level action. ScienceDirect. Colorado.. coal. is not likely to substantially alter the national fuel mix nor materially address the energy risks we all face.7 GW of central-station renewable energy capacity will be added in Texas. electricity supply given existing state-based RPS mandates. New Mexico. which destroy the life of grace and create the threat of eternal damnation. Government and International Affairs Professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute. small projects are projected to increase the Why is the outlook so bleak for renewable energy in the U.1 percent of total generation. EIA's production of renewable energy by only 100 to 200 MW in each state. and Wisconsin. Because the accumulated demand for electricity is expected to accelerate over the next several decades. including census divisions and North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) sub-regions. Grid-connected solar is anticipated to wind farms. are distinguished from capital and mortal sins.S. Ultimately.7 percent in 2030. the most compelling argument for federal action is that a national RPS may help correct many of the market distortions brought about by a patchwork of inconsistent state actions. it creates inherent inequities between ratepayers in some states that are paying for “free riders” in others.11 When broken down by state. in the hope that stakeholders can begin to overcome them. New York. NEMS tracks the geographical differences in regional energy markets at sub-state levels. more diverse and more predictable national market for renewable resources without significantly increasing aggregate electricity prices. and 0. 2007. Montana. Concomitantly. and the need to build or upgrade transmission capacity from remote resource areas will likely discourage significant investments in renewable energy. Big Is Beautiful. significantly deterring largescale investments in renewable energy generation. The Seven Deadly Sins of State-Based RPS In Roman Catholic theology. more than 93 percent is estimated to result from large remain at less than 0. A national RPS may help correct many of the market distortions brought about by a patchwork of inconsistent state actions. comparatively higher capital costs for renewable energy. Vermont.9 The U. and natural gas still are projected to provide roughly the same 86-percent share of the total U. projections show that this percentage is unlikely to improve considerably. the EIA used NEMS to estimate the contribution of renewable fuels to U. Maine. which are relatively minor and can be forgiven through any sacrament of the Church. DoE consultant on the Climate Change Technology Program (Benjamin and Christopher Cooper. Framing the debate as a choice between a perfectly functioning. Electricity Journal 20. from 0.”3 But looks can be deceiving. when they were used to educate and instruct followers about immorality.4 Indeed. opponents of a national RPS tend to ignore the unique drawbacks associated with a complex web of state-based mandates.5 The most severe offenses – often called the “Seven Deadly Sins” – became a deeply embedded theme in Christian culture around the Fourteenth Century.12 updated analysis reflects the same general trend for renewables: Despite the rapid growth projected for biofuels and other nonhydroelectric renewable energy sources … oil. the EIA projects that 3. electricity generation from biomass is expected to increase EIA's projection means that non-hydroelectric renewable energy deployment is expected to rise to no more than about 3 percent by 2015 and 4 percent by 2030. venial sins. 3. Of the capacity stimulated by state RPS programs.5 GW in Minnesota. 31. nonhydroelectric renewable energy resources have provided around 2 percent of the country's electricity supply. NEMS also is used as a benchmark for models employed by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) and the Tellus Institute in their own projections of renewable energy production. In its 2006 Annual Energy Outlook.6 We argue that state-based RPS need redemption from an analogous set of seven deficiencies. First sin: Failing to diversify fuels Even though some state RPS programs are decades old (Iowa's Alternative Energy Production law passed in 1985 and Minnesota mandated utilities purchase renewable energy in 1994). while noteworthy.9 percent of total generation in 2004 to 1. . especially given the rapid expansion of state-based RPS programs? The EIA notes that poor financing. A. 0. Energy Information Administration (EIA) uses one of the most rigorous methodological tools to estimate future renewable energy deployment: the National Energy Modeling System (NEMS). In an early release of its 2007 Annual Energy Outlook. the penetration of renewable energy technologies in individual states.9 percent.RPS AFF 1. In Arizona. Hawaii. one might be tempted to agree with the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) that “activities on a number of fronts supplant the need for a federal RPS. Illinois.4 percent to just 1. state standards have failed to substantially increase the deployment of renewable energy technologies on a national scale.7 For the past 15 years.8 Even with the contribution of the existing 21 state RPS mandates. primary energy supply in 2030 that they did in 2005. Wind is forecast to increase from 0. Massachusetts.S. undistorted energy market and a clunky.S. artificial federal intervention.13 Significantly.0 13/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Inherency A patchwork of state-level RPS discourages investment in renewables with nonuniform interpretations and exemptions—the most authoritative studies project continued levels of fossil fuels use absent federal action Sovacool 7 – Research Fellow in the Energy Governance Program at National University of Singapore.4.4 percent to 0.1 percent of total generation. Geothermal power is projected to increase from 0. federal legislation can help create a more just.10 Nationally. Not only does reliance on state-based action make for an uncertain regulatory environment for potential investors. New Jersey.

and landfills near state borders (when possible). Renewable Energy: Economically Sound. quite cleverly. None of the 21 existing state RPS mandates are alike.14 B. and fuel mixture every time they crossed state lines. Michigan. coal mines.”18 The current state-by-state approach to RPS is also creating unanticipated difficulties to the expansion of distributed generation technologies by forcing unusually prohibitive operational procedures. Minnesota. and refusing to minimize toxic pollution. The commons in each instance – grass. Wisconsin. jobs. the existing regulatory environment especially hurts renewable power systems by flagrantly subsidizing conventional energy systems. for example. In Maine. failing to price greenhouse gas emissions. even to the detriment of the public good. whereas the costs were distributed to everyone. a senior vice president at PacifiCorp.6 States will often require higher smokestacks on fossil-fueled power plants as a way to minimize the environmental harms of air pollution within their state.S. forecasts that fuel cells and community-scale wind energy projects are unlikely to play a meaningful role in state RPS markets until policymakers adopt a more comprehensive and uniform approach. fuel cells and high-efficiency cogeneration count as “renewable.”8 Indiana recently authorized British Petroleum to release 1. Garrett Hardin developed Examples of “the commons” for Hardin included agricultural grazing lands. Importers of liquefied natural gas and oil. Minnesota and Iowa have voluntary standards.9 Federal and state governments support select energy systems through freakishly large energy subsidies.RPS AFF 1.17 In testimony before the U.7 Officials will locate trash incinerators. have little incentive to change the nature of their imports to improve energy security (a positive externality. primarily because the benefits from increased output (more fuel.4 About five decades later. Don Furman.5. as Hardin noted. rational. or public good) since the benefits of doing so are distributed to all companies and importers. stakeholders and investors must not only grapple with inconsistencies.15 States vary in their targets. definitions of eligible resources. .0 DDI 2008 14/136 Strange & Serrano Lab making it harder for renewables to compete in state-based electricity markets without some form of regulatory intervention. a problem known as “state line syndrome.” while the standard in Pennsylvania includes coal gasification and non-renewable distributed generation. but it has very real implications for the electric utility sector. while many other states make it a function of electricity sales. so that some of the harms from leakage and waste are transferred to other states. Second sin: Discouraging investment If America's interstate highway system were structured like our renewable energy market.2 percent by 2011. has set its RPS target at 2. so long as we behave only as independent. tire pressure. land. Rhode Island. Iowa. and compliance mechanisms. building. Inconsistent tariff structures and interconnection requirements add complexity (and therefore cost) to distributed generation projects. a series of inconsistent requirements and regulatory frameworks will make planning. including their competitors. they are forced to decipher vague and often competing state statutes. parking spaces. and a thief robbing a bank. Electricity journal 21. shifting the pollution instead to a broader geographic area encompassing other states. Politically Difficult. AG) the term “tragedy of the commons” to refer to how people (and firms) rationally externalize as many of the costs associated with their activities that they can. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.16 In Connecticut. In fact. while Massachusetts. while Rhode Island is shooting for 16 percent by 2020. among other things. These exemptions created uncertainty over whether the statute would be enforced against any utilities at all. purchase requirements. free parking meters. and tax revenue) accrue within the state while the costs (pollution and waste) are distributed to Illinois. Such situations demonstrate that existing firms will.584 pounds of ammonia and 4. and Wisconsin. a coalition of electric generating and electric distribution companies committed to responsible environmental stewardship. As the next three sections will show.19 Status quo is a tragedy of the commons in the electricity utilities sector Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. and Pennsylvania all levy different noncompliance fees. drivers would be forced to change engines. and acquiring generating capacity on a multi-state basis confusing and contradictory. lamented how “for multi-state utilities. “we are locked into a system of fouling our own nest.925 pounds of suspended solids into Lake Michigan daily from its Whiting refinery. externalize as many costs as they can to other firms and society at large. and Texas set purchase requirements based on installed capacity. freeenterprisers. for instance. Connecticut. the Clean Energy Group. an unclear description of “electric suppliers” enabled the state's Department of Public Utility Control to exempt two of the state's largest utilities from RPS obligations. renewable energy credit (REC) trading schemes. the National Parks. Amid this complex tangle of regulations. Or.”5 This may all sound rather dry and theoretical. other people's money – had a tendency to be exploited because the benefits of abusing them accrued to a small group of individuals.

2007.S.pdf) While most state efforts have been laudable. By subjecting an increasingly interstate electric utility market to confusing and sometimes contradictory state regulations.26 In Connecticut.newenergychoices. encourages utilities to exploit the inconsistencies. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). state RPS statutes have created a patchwork of inconsistent. Don Furman. this tangle of state-based RPS programs discourages long-term investments and.” . they are forced to decipher vague and often contradictory state statutes.profit organization committed to reforming U.profit organization committed to reforming U.27 Hawaii’s standard contained so much “wiggle room” that it was unclear even to its own advocates whether it applied to most of the state’s utilities. the state’s Department of Public Utility Control originally exempted two of the state’s largest utilities from RPS obligations because the description of “electric suppliers” in the statute was unclear. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). 29 In testimony before the U. a national non. Ambiguous State RPS encourages noncompliance and a dependence on nonrenewables Dr. These exemptions created uncertainty over whether the statute would be enforced against any utilities at all.RPS AFF 1. http://www. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. a series of inconsistent requirements and regulatory frameworks will make planning. June. in some cases.pdf) Amid this complex morass of regulations.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.lead to a reliance on non-renewable energy Dr. building and acquiring generating capacity on a multi-state basis confusing and contradictory. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). 2007. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris.S.28 Such ambiguity has lead to “wide disagreements among parties in regulatory proceedings” about how to enforce some state RPS mandates. lamented how “for multi-state utilities.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. for example.newenergychoices. stakeholders and investors must not only grapple with inconsistencies. a senior VP at PacifiCorp. June.S. often conflicting mandates that distort the market for renewable energy technologies and unintentionally inflate electricity prices. http://www. a national non.0 15/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Inherency State RPS’s are inconsistencies and inefficient. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).

com/discoveryguides/ern/05jun/overview. included provisions that would have established a national renewable portfolio standard (RPS). No national RPS. In the extremely long run.S. The RPS would have required electric utilities to procure a certain percentage of their electricity from renewable resources or purchase renewable energy credits from other sources to meet the standard. efforts to impose a national RPS. a federal RPS has been considered by Congress -. With the exception of nuclear.S. The problem? A national RPS requires coordinated and coherent federal leadership on climate change and energy. Congress recently passed a new energy bill that. lexis) The U.and rejected -. nonrenewable sources represent sequestration of millions of years of energy from the sun.17 times. single RPS for the whole nation? Seems obvious.” 4/24/2008. The recent energy bill is just the latest of repeated. oil remains the indisputably cheapest source of fuel.1 billion nationwide.0 16/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Inherency No national RPS.alternatives are key Ethan Goffman (writer for Proquest. the human race is dependent upon renewable energy sources. http://solveclimate. Currently there is no panacea.php). energy industry”. The US Senate has passed some form of it three times since 2002. however. there has been much debate about the potential merits and hazards of a national RPS. So. Over the past ten years. The House passed one in 2007.csa. published hundreds of articles. In the long run. “Changing resources. changing market: The impact of a national renewable portfolio standard on the U.rejected again and again Joshua Fershee 08 – assistant professor of law at the University of North Dakota (Energy Law Journal.com/blog/20080424/renewable-portfolio-standards-america-s-clean-energysavior). why not ditch the patchwork of 25 different standards and institute a consistent. alternative energy is the only answer to the eventual diminution of oil supplies. and thus far failed. Regarding transportation.RPS AFF 1. As such. “Global Oil supply and US energy policy. especially when you throw this into the mix: The Network for New Energy Choices found in its 2007 report that a national RPS would create 80% more jobs than comparable investment in fossil fuels and would save electricity consumers in every region money -. each source has its disadvantages. until that last minute.$49. Many alternative fuels are also nonrenewable and will eventually run out.” http://www. .has already been rejected 17 times Solve Climate (“Renewable Portfolio Standards: America’s clean energy standard. June 2005. if the RPS works so well. in fact. and more is sure to follow We’re still dependent on non-renewables.

regular unleaded has dropped from $2. President Bush today said he worries that declining gasoline prices will make Americans less concerned about the nation's future energy needs.36 over the same period. When the demand for oil goes up in China or in India. see. demand and a buildup in crude oil and gasoline inventories.25. "I want to tell you that I welcome the low gasoline prices. us complacent about our future when it comes to energy.S. Louis." Gasoline prices have dropped sharply in recent weeks. it causes the price of crude oil to rise. the average price in the United States for a gallon of regular unleaded is $2. “Bush: ‘We’re too dependent on oil’. which means the economy becomes less competitive . in part because of a slowdown in U. low gasoline prices may mask that concern. And since we import about 60 percent of the crude oil we use. sponsored by the departments of energy and agriculture." Bush offered his audience a dose of Energy 101.look." he said at the Renewable Fuels Conference in St. Today. We need to diversify away from oil for economic reasons.0 17/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Inherency US is too dependent on oil." Bush said. let me just put it bluntly: We're too dependent on oil. "However.washingtonpost. asserting early in his speech: "We live in a global world. according to the AAA motor club. it causes our price to go up as well. In the Washington region.html). "Now.transition is necessary Bill Brubaker (10/12/2006. .” http://www. "Energy is -.80 to $2. it's not going to dim my enthusiasm for making sure we diversify away from oil.RPS AFF 1.61 a month ago. ." Bush said he frets that the "low price of gasoline will make .com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/10/12/AR2006101200939. compared with $2.

S. Senior Researcher & Director. and government subsidies that continue to favor dirty. The U. .5 percent of the United States land area and a fraction of its wind resource potential. As recently as 1990. due to a lack of appropriate and consistent government support for clean energy technologies. and a more secure future. is the world's leading manufacturer of wind turbines. U. we are losing our role as technological leaders. the U. domestic and renewable energy technologies . better quality of life. with several turbine companies that consistently rank in the global top ten. “Losing the Clean Energy Race”.greenbiz. 26 March 2002. Meanwhile. The US will also fail to glean multiple benefits not traditionally measured in economic terms that come with clean. began . a small nation of about five million people. the American public wants clean energy. With only 4.the clean energy revolution. and ownership of manufacturers. industries played the dominant global role in wind and solar PV development and deployment.RPS AFF 1. If this trend is not reversed. conventional fuels and technologies. share of global PV shipments reached a peak in 1996.including cleaner environment.S. sparked by successful government policies aimed to develop markets for renewable energy. We are now falling farther and farther behind as Japan and Europe surpass us with regard to total installed clean energy generating capacity. The rising demand for Japanese and European made technology is due primarily to the dramatic increases in demand for renewable energy capacity in these countries.S. Germany has more than double the U. billions of dollars in potential investment and revenue. share of the global market. safe. But. U. companies must compete in the global marketplace. Denmark. Perhaps most importantly. Around the world. Energy and Climate Change Program (Janet. government continues to subsidize fossil fuels and nuclear power. at levels many times that for renewable energy technologies. reduced risk of global warming. Total grid-connected PV in the United States is now estimated to be only 15 percent of nthatin Japan. installed wind energy capacity. America will lose millions of potential high-wage. http://www.actually. improved human health. and 31 percent of that in Germany.S.com/column/2002/03/26/losing-clean-energy-race accessed 24 June 2008) (Jhaveri) The United States once led .0 18/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—inherency US is losing leadership in global renewable energy markets—only federal action can reverse this Sawin 02. high-tech jobs. leaders in business and government are calling for a transition to a clean energy economy to address global climate change. increase national security and meet rising demand for energy worldwide.S. declining from 44 percent that year to 27 percent in 2001.

compared to coal and natural gas plants with a reliability of 85 to 90 percent. More domestic renewable energy manufacturing facilities will save utilities money by decreasing reliance on overseas shipments of materials. Market forces create perverse incentives for some utilities to profit from congestion prices. June. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). • Increased deployment of renewables improves system reliability The variability of renewable resources becomes easier to manage the more they are deployed. renewable energy systems can start providing revenue to help pay down debt on transmission investments while conventional plants are waiting to come online. Expedited debt repayment decreases capital costs and lowers electricity rates. http://www.5 percent. • Renewable energy overcomes public objection to new transmission lines Case studies show that public opposition to transmission lines turns into widespread support when utilities justify the infrastructure with the need to interconnect new renewable generation. Transmission – A National RPS Speeds Investment in Critical Infrastructure • Utilities benefit from congestion pricing. a national non. • Increased demand for wind components creates new American industries. • A national RPS forces critical transmission system upgrades Maintaining adequate transmission will require the construction of 26.000 companies (with over 1 million employees) to enter the turbine manufacturing market. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. materials and manufacturing sectors • American companies have enough materials for major expansions in wind energy. delaying new transmission until the system is at risk of catastrophic failure. • A national RPS will improve manufacturing efficiency.profit organization committed to reforming U. Higher technical reliability lowers the probability of unexpected outages and requires less short-term operating reserve. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).S. it is made up by larger outputs of renewable energy in other areas. • A national RPS speeds recovery of transmission investments Because of their quicker leadtimes. 2007. American composite manufacturers say they can provide enough fiberglass at competitive prices in the next three years to power 100.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.600 miles of new transmission in the next decade. prices increase because there is not enough electricity to meet demand.S.0 19/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—Manufacturing Internal National RPS spurs investment and the manufacturing sector Dr. .newenergychoices.RPS AFF 1. quadrupling planned expenditures to $56 billion by 2011. When transmission is saturated. which suffer from unfavorable exchange rates.000 MW of new wind energy (nearly 6 percent of the country’s entire electricity supply). Increased demand for wind turbine materials and components will allow more than 16.pdf) A National RPS will jump-start U. When energy is not available in one area. • More renewable energy decreases the need for reserve capacity Modern wind turbines have a technical reliability of 97.

0 20/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—Competitiveness adv RPS spurs competition and economic growth Ryan Wiser (scientist in the Electricity Markets and Policy Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. PhD in energy and resources. provided that there are several suppliers bidding on any particular contract.” http://www. RPS and tendering policies can create wholesale price competition among renewable energy suppliers.pdf. Feed-in Tariffs.resource-solutions. . they can create the volume that allows renewable energy generators to lower costs through economies of scale. Though these policies do not inherently lower costs of production.RPS AFF 1. and they can help local renewable developers gain project development experience that helps to lower costs. and Tendering Policies.org/lib/librarypdfs/IntPolicy-Feed-in_LawsandRPS. the volume of projects and speed of infrastructure development/cost reductions will be dependent upon the initial level of industry development at the time the policy is implemented and a program design (for tendering strategies) that includes effective penalties for speculative and non-cost based bids. June 2002). However. “Renewable Energy Policy Options for China: A comparison of Renewable Portfolio Standards.

Several current legislative proposals usefully provide for a regular review every 5 or 10 years based on input from the Administration and the National Academy of Sciences on the current science.0 21/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—Modeled US leadership is key to spurring other countries to cut emissions David Doniger et al (Antonia Herzog. For too long. the United States has excused its own inaction by saying that it cannot solve this problem alone. centrist approach to global warming legislation. Daniel Lashof.pdf). economics. Congress would then decide whether or not to fine-tune the declining cap. As the Senate resolution states.sciencemag.RPS AFF 1. “An ambitious. it is reasonable to take stock periodically to ensure that others are taking reciprocal action. by beginning to curb our own emissions we will encourage others to act (4).” 12/22/2006. At the same time. http://www. But other countries cannot be expected to play their full part if the world’s largest emitter continues to do nothing. and state of international cooperation (6–8). Global progress requires that we begin to act at home and rejoin international negotiations with a new attitude. all are in the Natural Resource Defense Council in Washington.org/cgi/reprint/314/5800/764. .

however. They don't have to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to see which technologies succeed. and within three years Japan became the world leader in PV sales. Fay observes that "renewables will have to progress quickly if they are to supply a major proportion of the world's energy in the first half of the next century. and U. They must first be tested in niche markets.0 22/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—Competitiveness Internal The renewable energy market is ciritcal to American economic and technological leadership –federal investments are key Romm 96. followed by a gradual decline as U.partner. we could end up only augmenting our debilitating trade deficit in oil with a dollop of oil-replacing technologies.S. the transition to low-cost renewables that Shell envisions will likely be slowed." Federal investments clearly make a difference in technology development and global market share. whereas in the United States it was 4. Using Shell's numbers. when the transition occurs. Bell Laboratories invented the first practical PV cell. seems inevitable at some point in the middle of the next century. We cannot know today which technologies will deliver the lowest cost energy in the future. . Costs fall as they progress down the 'learning curve with increasing applications The long term nature of the research. such as an oil crisis. and the real potential for failure. With proposed Congressional cuts. Through the 1960s and 1970s. the deep cuts of the 1980s have taken their toll: in the past decade. a widely held view. When the government pulls out of a promising long-term technology area. Capitol Hill Hearing Testimony FDCH. electricity prices are a boost to us economically. the United States will miss what could be a very large new source of jobs in the next century. the price for electricity in Germany's industrial sector was 8. which is why the DOE pursues a variety of approaches. Countries like Germany and Japan not only have far larger government financial incentives for the use and export of renewable energy.8 cents per kilowatt. March 14th) [Fay = Chris Fay. as noted above.S. annual sales in renewable-energy technologies may hit $50 billion in 2020. and almost $400 billion in 2040. even if slowed. in 1990.hour. which I share. however. First. Such purchases represent a huge savings for our foreign competition. however. These cuts will have two effects. is that diversity of supply itself minimizes overall cost. In 1955. With prudent the peak. (Joesph. Consider the case of photovoltaics. they create one disadvantage.8 cents per kilowatt-hour. since America remains the leader in most relevant renewable technologies. German and Japanese companies snapped up several major American PV companies that accounted for 63% of the PVs manufactured in the United States. investments and purchases by NASA for space use helped sustain the PV industry and gave America leadership in world sales. they typically pay far more for electricity: In 1991. the nation is protected from global shocks that only affect some of its sources of energy. Second. That way. Sadly. Renewable energy will be cost-effective in foreign countries before it is in America.RPS AFF 1. The transition. three years later. In the later year such an industry would support several million jobs. Indeed. chairman and ceo Shell UK] Fay notes that "new technologies cannot leap from laboratory to mass market over night. and deployment. historically this hasn't happened. The Bush Administration began to increase funding for solar energy and. where some succeed but many fail. They can only emerge through the process of widespread commercial experimentation and competitive optimization. While some argue that the cuts in federal R&D will be made up for by the private sector. That advantage is being taken away by current and proposed Congressional budget cuts. demonstration. including home-grown biomass with its implications for rural economic development. launched a voluntary collaborative with the American PV industry to improve manufacturing technology. government funding remains a sizable fraction of total world R&D funding. The primary competitive advantage the United States has had in renewables is technological leadership driven by federal research and development support. In 1982. the United States will be importing $100 billion worth of Oil annually 10 to 15 from now. is why many options must be pursued at once and why private sector companies are reluctant to invest. Finally.only let the United States do the basic research and early development and then spend a few tens of millions of dollars plucking the winners when the federal government abandons funding for applied research. or an unanticipated national or global environmental crisis. federal support for renewable energy was cut deeply. Moreover. it sends a signal to the industrial and financial community that the area has no long-term promise and that the federal government is not a reliable.S made technology and domestic fuels. They need. acting principal deputy assistant secretary office of energy efficiency and renewable energy. while low U. the United States regained the lead in PV sales in this rapidly growing industry. substitute for imported oil. The Clinton Administration has further accelerated funding for PVs.

RPS AFF 1. efficiency and innovation that will deliver renewable energy at the lowest possible cost.org/energy/cleanenergy/renewables.by increasing the required amount over time -. which shows that the U. biomass.html) [S. A 20% RES would create 80. creating a healthy renewable electricity industry would position U. and a recent government report proposed increasing to 20% renewable energy by 2020. Spain.the RPS can put the electricity industry on a path toward increasing sustainability. Market implementation will result in competition.sierraclub.org/policy/rpsbrief.S. Adopting a 20% standard will put the U.2 Denmark and Finland are planning for 30% renewable energy by 2010.asp) [S. total consumer energy bills would be lower in 2020 than business-asusual because the RES would reduce natural gas prices.(3) RPS is based on domestic competition American Wind Energy Association October 1997 (http://www. The United Kingdom plans to increase renewable energy from 2. Regions in Denmark. No Date Given (http://www. Furthermore. No Date Given (http://www. Page] The Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS) is a flexible.0 23/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab RPS makes the US renewable globally competitive Sierra Club.000 new.8% of electricity use today to 10% by 2010. renewable energy firms to compete successfully with European and Japanese companies for a multi-billion international market in renewable energy. Lower energy bills will make the American economy more competitive and increase economic growth and employment. has more than sufficient potential to produce 20% of our electricity from renewable sources. Both EIA and UCS analyses found that under a 20% RES. Leadership—Renewable k/t Econ .S. market-driven policy that can ensure that the public benefits of wind. solar. Renewing Where We Live. on track to be competitive with other countries-many of which have poorer resources and less land area-that have adopted similar or more aggressive standards.S.asp) [S.sierraclub. Page] A national RES would have substantial economic benefits. and geothermal energy continue to be recognized as electricity markets become more competitive. Sierra Club. the RPS relies almost entirely on the private market for its implementation.2 billion in new income for farmers. The policy ensures that a minimum amount of renewable energy is included in the portfolio of electricity resources serving a state or country. RPS makes the US economy and renewables market globally competitive. ranchers and rural landowners and $5 billion in property tax revenues for communities. and Germany already get nearly 20% of their electricity just from wind turbines. spur $80 billion in new capital investment. The European Union goal is 22% by 2010. high quality jobs in the wind industry alone.org/energy/cleanenergy/renewables.awea. Page] The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) recently completed a study. and provide $1. Because it is a market standard. and -.

which would slow down the U. and an improved national and global environment. economy. Productivity growth allows companies to make more with less— less money. economy. Thanks to the Bush tax cuts. Even slight improvements in economic growth. the less money is left for other purposes.S. workers. Medicare and Social Security benefits. (Of course. or. The government pays interest on its loans. which knows a thing or two about Latin American financial crises. 2008.) What spurs productivity growth? As the McKinsey Global Institute's Diana Farrell says. fewer workers. The trade deficit will destroy the global economy New Republic – 1/24/2004 That's what the current tax debate is all about.RPS AFF 1. they would demand more money (i. eventually. It sounds insane. or leveraged and reinvested.. each justification enough for the investment. there is no guarantee that wealth will be distributed evenly. Bush's proposed budget for fiscal 2005 includes cuts in spending on medical benefits for veterans. eventually. At best. homeland security. You can already see this taking place. The bigger the interest payments. economy Nina Hachigian and Mona Stuphen. a reduced trade deficit. True. The Next American Century There are myriad factors influencing the U. the government could just keep borrowing more money to pay its bills. But. And. and job training for the unemployed--naturally. more efficient use of energy. more American jobs. just like a household paying down a mortgage or carrying a large credit card debt. the lenders would get sick of lending.S. when compounded over time. economic growth is productivity growth. producing an Argentina-style financial calamity." posing "significant risks" not only to the United States but to the entire world economy Innovation is critical to the U.S. it's not vacations or luxury cars that get eliminated from the budgets: It's school lunches.S.e. they would stop lending the money altogether. Stanford Graduate School and former Service Officer in the Clinton administration. including makin5. health insurance for pregnant women." and many have argued it will be the most important factor driving American economic success this century. the International Monetary Fund. higher interest rates) to keep underwriting American profligacy. but innova tion ultimately drives the U. an already huge federal debt is getting even bigger. The linchpin to U. The money left over can be passed to consumers. "[T]he key to productivity growth is innovation. issued a 60-page report warning that the United States had run up an "unprecedented level of external debt for a large industrial country. According to an article in The New York Times last week. housing subsidies for the poor. can make enormous differences in per capita income.S. principle deputy assistant secretary at the department of energy.S. fewer machines. GDP growth. just last week. while proposing further new tax cuts. Each of these uses ultimately translates into better jobs and greater wealth for Americans. and some 65 percent of productivity growth since World War II. 3/14/96[FDCH] Considering that the last war America fought was in the Persian Gulf a little over five years ago. as responsible holders of the public trust who among us is prepared to answer the following question sometime in the next decade: Why did you fail to take reasonable and prudent actions when you heard the warnings and should have understood the dangers? This is especially true since the energy R&D needed to respond to growing dependence on Persian Gulf oil achieves many other national benefits. standard of living. yes.0 24/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—Innovation key New innovation will cut the trade deficit Joseph Romm. But. At worst. . Here is why: economists agree that economic growth is the key ingredient to improving standards of living. Technological improvements have accounted for up to 50 percent of U. and that there are a number of experts warning us of the dangers. when the government doesn't have extra money.

rendering some otherwise pressing budget problems like Medicare and Social Security financially catastrophic.0 25/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Collapse of innovation ensures economic collapse Nina Hachigian & Mona Stuphen 08. America is counting on innovation in a very high-stakes game. to ensure the continued health of its innovation system.RPS AFF 1. Given its national debt. Stanford Graduate School and former Service Officer in the Clinton administration. First. . The Next American Century There are several reasons for the U. America's productivity growth stands between it and financial ruin. America's fiscal situation would deteriorate further. If American innovation slips and economic growth slows. 2008.S.

0 26/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—Renewable k/t Econ RPS saves money and promotes economic growth Union of Concerned Scientists 6/19/08 (http://www. The analysis—conducted by the DOE's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory—compares the results from 28 state or utility-level renewable electricity standard cost studies completed since 1998. Department of Energy (DOE). which is currently more costly than other renewable technologies.html) State renewable electricity standards (also known as a renewable portfolio standard. .org/clean_energy/clean_energy_policies/lbl_RES_cost_analysis. such as wind. The DOE study finds that. or RPS) are generally expected to have minimal rate impacts.1 billion. according to a recent study by the U. Since the study does not analyze the effect of increased renewable energy use on natural gas markets. It finds that 70 percent of the studies reviewed project retail electricity rate increases of no greater than one percent.6 billion by 2025.[2] the overall energy bill impacts from state renewable electricity standards would likely be even lower. The other assumes that the state standard it analyzes would result in large amounts of solar energy. one uses cost assumptions for renewable energy that are higher than most analysts project. Six of the studies result in cost savings for electricity consumers (Figure 1).The conclusion that state standards are expected to result in modest electricity rate impacts is consistent with findings of previous analyses of a national renewable electricity standard by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) and Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). All of the studies that consider the larger economic effects of state renewable electricity standards found that they will result in job creation and economic growth.[4] The DOE report also reviews the projected public benefits found in the cost studies. However.S. a 2004 UCS analysis found that increasing a national standard to 20 percent by 2020 would save electricity and gas consumers $49. saving consumers $22. and bioenergy.ucsusa. Two of the studies surveyed found rate increases of greater than five percent. [3] In addition.[1] A renewable electricity standard—currently found in twenty-one states and the District of Columbia—requires electric utilities to gradually increase the amount of renewable energy sources. on average. state standards will result in a monthly electricity bill increase of just 38 cents for a typical residential household.RPS AFF 1. Many of the studies also quantify the expected reductions in carbon dioxide emissions resulting from RPS policies. demonstrating that renewable energy is a cost-effective strategy for reducing the heat-trapping gases that contribute to global warming. in their power supplies. A 2005 EIA study found that a 10 percent by 2020 national standard would lower electricity and natural gas prices. solar. which several studies have found would lower demand and prices by increasing competition.

In part to accommodate diverse goals and regional differences. 9 State RPS policies also vary in their scope of application (e. .gov/today/2007/Mar/16-Fri/energy-report. Ryan Wiser. in theory.RPS AFF 1. electricity suppliers can meet their RPS obligations through the use of tradable renewable energy certificates (RECs). which are designed to promote diversity among renewable technologies. state RPS policies differ in their design.0 27/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—RPS Solves Competitiveness RPS and RECs create competition Cliff Chen. whether publicly owned utilities are required to comply).pdf) A well-designed RPS should generally encourage competition among renewable developers and provide incentives to electricity suppliers to meet their renewable purchase obligations in a leastcost fashion.g. RPS policies in some states provide for resource tiers or credit multipliers.lbl. In many – but not all – jurisdictions. the use of RECs increases compliance flexibility and may therefore reduce overall compliance costs. and in their use of compliance flexibility and non-compliance penalties. however.. and Mark Bolinger 2007 (Weighing the Costs and Benefits of State Renewables Portfolio Standards: A Comparative Analysis of State-Level Policy Impact Projections http://www. The definition of eligible renewable projects and the amount of renewable energy that is required varies.

even though it is overwhelmingly in their interest to do so.4 . found that a national RES to provide 10 percent of U. Consumers and Businesses Money: Diversifying the power supply by developing America’s homegrown renewable energy resources creates a more competitive market. but our economic and national security will be further destabilized. the ranks of competition for increasingly scarce energy supplies will swell dramatically RES creates a market for renewables.org/projects/progressivepriorities/files/Ch12-Energy. Not only will CO2 emissions from the developing world continue to skyrocket. A 2002 UCS report. using high renewable energy cost estimates. and could save energy consumers as much as $13. economic development.RPS AFF 1. however.pdf) United States leadership is necessary to engage developing countries—particularly China and India—which already face major pollution challenges and will eventually produce emissions well in excess of the United States and other industrialized countries.5 billion on their energy bills between 2002 and 2020. driving down prices Union of Concerned Scientists No Date Given (http://www.S. And the consequences are significant.ucsusa. the UCS report looked at what would happen if the national RES were doubled to 20 percent by 2020. market-based compliance with air pollution regulations. In this case. Two recent studies by the U.S. which permits lower-cost. have virtually no impact on electricity prices.org/clean_energy/clean_energy_policies/real-energy-solutions-the-renewableenergy-standard. this is unlikely to change.S.3. In addition. Clean-energy incentives for the developing world are woefully inadequate (to the extent they exist at all) and poorly coordinated by developed nations. Energy Information Administration (EIA)1. leadership. while still saving consumers $4. Many parts of the developing world have the opportunity to implement clean-energy strategies as they establish and expand their energy systems. which can reduce natural gas prices and save consumers money on their energy bills. the RES would function much like the Clean Air Act credit-trading system. Unless we help change the global energy path. This market-based approach creates competition among renewable generators. electricity from renewables by 2020 would lower natural gas prices. which is much easier and less expensive than overhauling existing systems. EIA 10 RPS NS total energy bills.0 28/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—Creates Market US leadership in renewable incentives is key for global renewable development Center for American Progress 2005 (http://www.html) By using tradable "renewable energy credits" to achieve compliance at the lowest cost. accelerating the pace of global climate change. and creates an ongoing incentive to drive down costs.americanprogress. and environmental benefits. providing the greatest amount of clean power for the lowest price. also found that a 10 percent by 2020 national RES could significantly reduce consumer energy bills. Developed nations are doing little to encourage this. Roughly two billion people still lack even basic energy services.2 billion. Renewing Where We Live. the RES would achieve greater diversity. Without U. Renewable energy is not subject to the price volatility that plagues natural gas power plants.

issued to their own qualifying renewable facilities or purchased from others .ucsusa. Page] To stimulate an increase in the use of renewable resources to generate electricity. In a competitive market. For example. non-hydro renewable power capacity increases from about 20. 6) would authorize more than $13 billion over 10 years in new and expanded tax incentives for the oil.10 A study by the Renewable Energy Policy Project showed that between 1943 and 1999.000 MW in 2005 to 180.” The Electricity Journal Volume 20.S.equal to the share required in each year.4 billion for solar energy and $1. Issue 4. RPS stimulates renewable market Alan Nogee. generation from biomass integrated gasification combined cycle plants becomes costcompetitive more quickly.13 RPS creates competition over renewable energy Energy Information Administration May 2003. Page] Table 2 illustrates that the mix of renewable energy generation under various national RPS scenarios is much more sensitive to the difference in assumptions between UCS and EIA than the projected consumer benefits. Pages 33-47) [S. several bills or amendments in Congress call for the establishment of a renewable portfolio standard (RPS) for all electricity retail suppliers. a supplier with 100 billion kilowatt-hours of retail electricity sales in a year with a 5-percent RPS requirement would have to hold 5 billion kilowatt. with significant contributions also coming from biomass and geothermal resources. Companies who generate power from qualifying renewable facilities will be issued credits that they can hold for their own use or sell to others. To meet the RPS requirement. Using EIA assumptions. DOE investments in R&D and state and federal incentives have reduced the cost of renewable energy generation as much as 80-90 percent. the price of renewable credits should rise to the level needed to stimulate power plant developers to bring on the amount of qualifying renewable capacity needed to meet the RPS requirement. (Analysis of a 10-percent Renewable Portfolio Standard) [S. Because wind power is more expensive under EIA's assumptions.R. May 2007. however. each individual electricity seller must hold credits .000 MW by 2020. the nuclear industry received over $145 billion in federal subsidies. Federal subsidies for renewable energy have been and continue to be much less than government subsidies for the fossil fuel and nuclear power industries. results in significantly more generation from biomass energy. This is primarily due to the more pessimistic cost and performance assumptions that EIA uses for wind power. Under this scenario. A typical RPS requires that a share of the power sold in the United States must come from qualifying renewable facilities. Thus.12 National energy legislation passed by a House and Senate conference committee in November 2003 (H.RPS AFF 1.11 Another study by the nonpartisan Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation projected that the oil and gas industries would receive an estimated $11 billion in tax breaks and loopholes that subsidize exploration and production activities between 1999 and 2003. Using UCS assumptions. and is deployed by the model to meet a larger portion of the annual .org/clean_energy/clean_energy_policies/the-renewable-electricitystandard. total U.html#5) [S. wind power provides the majority of renewable energy generation under the 20 percent RPS. versus $4. the RPS provides a subsidy to renewables to make them competitive with other resource options. Page] As discussed above. However. it allows the market to determine the most economical renewable options to develop to comply. and nuclear power industries. coal.hours of credits.0 29/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—Competitiveness Solvency Overwhelming non-renewable energy subsidies ensures renewables won’t compete in the status quo. Union of Concerned Scientists 8/27/07 (http://www. But renewable energy technologies still do not compete on a level playing field with conventional energy sources. gas.3 billion for wind energy. Jeff Deyette and Steve Clemmer 4/23/07 (“The Projected Impacts of a National Renewable Portfolio Standard.

The UCS scenario found that wind power would account for the majority of the generation resulting from the 109. the competition between renewable energy resources that is stimulated by a national RPS will pressure developers to reduce costs and determine the technology winners. Ultimately. total non-hydro renewable power capacity increases to 150. Under EIA assumptions. and solar resources continue to play important. Biomass. which has a higher capacity factor than wind power.0 DDI 2008 30/136 Strange & Serrano Lab targets. .000 MW of renewable eneergy capacity developed by 2020. Greater generation from biomass.RPS AFF 1. Under EIA's 10 percent RPS analysis. geothermal. The difference in renewable energy generation mix between scenarios that use UCS and EIA assumptions also holds true under a 10 percent national RPS. also results in less total renewable energy capacity being developed.000 MW by 2020. biomass actually accounts for a majority of the renewable energy mix by 2020. landfill gas. but lesser roles.

For example. Page] Investment in renewable energy can create high-paying jobs in the U. are now less expensive than building new natural gas.RPS AFF 1. as well as in installing and operating them. With UCS running NEMS using EIA's assumptions unmodified.S. benefiting both electricity consumers and other natural gas consumers. at both the 10 percent and 20 percent levels. Natural gas therefore costs less for electricity generation. All sectors of the economy would benefit. Jeff Deyette and Steve Clemmer 4/23/07 (“The Projected Impacts of a National Renewable Portfolio Standard.1 billion. where some people have suggested there is limited low-cost renewable energy potential (Table 1). Using UCS assumptions for renewable energy technologies. Issue 4.0 31/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Leadership—Competitiveness Jobs Solvency RPS creates jobs. Furthermore. and creating new competitors for the dominant fuel sources. as well as for other purposes. the national credit trading market created by a national RPS would allow utilities in all regions to purchase RECs for the same price. installation. by reducing the demand for fossil fuels. RPS creates new job and export opportunities–booting the domestic economy Alan Nogee.20 National RPS scenarios using either UCS or EIA assumptions also show that energy bills would be reduced in every region of the country. some renewable resources. And third.6 billion by 2025. respectively. with commercial.or coal-fired power plants over the expected lifetimes of the plants. A 10 percent renewable standard would save less money than the 20 percent scenario. and saves consumers 49. direct jobs are created in manufacturing renewable energy technologies. operations. and by creating economies of scale in manufacturing.6 billion. May 2007. consumers would save almost $28. renewable energy helps reduce the price of fossil fuels and restrain the ability of fossil fuel prices to increase in the future.” The Electricity Journal Volume 20. saves homeowners money. average consumer electricity prices would be lower than business as usual in every year of the forecast. As a result. Most importantly. the results showed that a 20 percent RPS would still reduce gas and electricity prices. In addition. Issue 4. with the savings continuing to grow to $37. Pages 33-47) [S.8 percent. and despite large differences in projected renewable energy costs and performance in the EIA and UCS assumptions. May 2007.2 billion on their electricity and natural gas bills by 2020.1 billion on their electricity and natural gas bills by 2020 . $17. industrial. and would likely see an increase in using local resources for generation that would often displace the need for importing fossil fuel. all regions do have some renewable energy resources. Jeff Deyette and Steve Clemmer 4/23/07 (“The Projected Impacts of a National Renewable Portfolio Standard.7 billion by 2025. First. Page] Both the UCS and EIA analyses show that a national RPS can save consumers money in several ways.1 billion Alan Nogee. average consumer natural gas prices would be lower than business as usual in nearly every year of the forecast under the 20 percent RPS.6 billion.” The Electricity Journal Volume 20. and $12. EIA's own analysis found that the 10 percent RPS would save consumers $22. and reduce projected generation costs. for a total savings of more than $27 billion. Cumulative savings to electricity customers under a 20 percent RPS totaled $15.4 billion. and residential customers’ total savings reaching $19. In the UCS scenario. with an average annual reduction of 1. Second. projected savings are robust enough to be found in all of the recent RPS scenarios. In addition.4 billion by 2020. and maintenance. Pages 33-47) [S. with an average annual reduction of 1. providing utilities with negotiating leverage over local renewable generators. This is primarily due to the lower natural gas prices for electricity generation and other direct gas consumers that all regions would see. a national RPS reduces the cost of renewable energy technologies. including the Southeast. the 20 percent RPS would save consumers $49. by creating competition among renewable sources and projects to meet the requirements.5 percent. especially wind energy at good sites. Jobs are also created when renewable energy workers spend their additional . with cumulative savings to gas consumers of an additional $11.

given the rapidly growing commitment of the rest of the world to expand use of renewable energy. Under the 10 percent scenario using UCS assumptions.” The Electricity Journal Volume 20. or countries—keeping money circulating in the local economy. representing a net increase of 157.S. Property tax revenues from renewable energy facilities can also help local communities pay for schools and vital public services. a national RPS can also benefit manufacturing states.480 jobs (Figure 4). Renewable energy can greatly benefit struggling rural economies.0 DDI 2008 32/136 Strange & Serrano Lab income on other goods and services and when consumer energy bill savings are spent in the economy. May 2007. Using UCS assumptions.S. but fewer jobs. economy in 2020. A 10 percent national RPS would create significant. However.9 billion in gross domestic product would be pumped into the U. RPS economically benefits small communities Alan Nogee. construction. Issue 4. A large share of the expenditures for renewable energy is spent on manufacturing equipment. Therefore. renewable energy facilities avoid the need to export cash to import fuel from other states.000 jobs would be created by 2020—a net increase of 91. operation. and creating more local jobs. Many of the new jobs would be located in rural areas where the renewable energy generating facilities would be sited. economy in 2020.2 billion in gross domestic product in the U. even those with less abundant renewable resources. Table 3 compares the economic development benefits of the 20 percent by 2020 and 10 percent by 2020 national RPS scenarios analyzed using UCS assumptions.RPS AFF 1. wind power lease payments. . $5. and other industries—nearly twice as many as fossil fuels. but usually from sources that are within 50 miles of a biomass plant. With biomass. Pages 33-47) [S. and installing and maintaining it. Renewable energy would also provide an additional $8. more than 190. Page] A national RPS can help improve the U. economy in other ways.220 jobs when compared with fossil fuels. and local ownership. ranchers. maintenance. by providing them the opportunity to manufacture and assemble components for renewable energy facilities.000 jobs in manufacturing. and landowners from biomass energy production.2 billion in income and $10. In addition. regions. by providing new income for farmers.1 billion in income and $5. because it is too expensive to transport it for long distances. Developing a strong manufacturing base can also create enormous export opportunities. we project that by 2020 the 20 percent RPS would generate more than 355.S. Jeff Deyette and Steve Clemmer 4/23/07 (“The Projected Impacts of a National Renewable Portfolio Standard. money is also spent on fuel. Renewable energy technologies tend to create more jobs than fossil fuel technologies because they are more labor-intensive.

In the latter years. RPS would reduces emissions by 59 percent Alan Nogee. May 2007. Issue 4. nearly two-thirds of the increase in coal generation projected under business as usual is displaced as a result of the new renewable energy generation. This trend threatens to push the U.0 33/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Climate—Pollution Solvency Displaces non renewable Alan Nogee. price increases. . May 2007. Pages 33-47) [S. Page] Increased renewable energy use would reduce CO2 emissions from power plants. Issue 4. Pages 33-47) [S. the 20 percent national RPS is projected to reduce CO2 emissions by 434 million metric tons (MMT) per year by 2020—15 percent below business as usual levels or a 59 percent reduction in the projected growth in emissions. as the increased use of biomass sources displaces higher amounts of coal generation. By reducing the demand for natural gas. This reduction is equivalent to taking nearly 71 million cars off the road. Pages 33-47) [S. Jeff Deyette and Steve Clemmer 4/23/07 (“The Projected Impacts of a National Renewable Portfolio Standard. or price manipulation. renewable energy can reduce imports. Lacking long fuel supply chains. a 20 percent RPS would produce slightly greater CO2 reductions of 468 MMT by 2020. Using UCS assumptions. RPS reduces dependence of foreign energy and dangerous LNG Alan Nogee. EIA projects imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to increase more than seven-fold over the next 20 years. down the same troubled road of rising dependence on imported gas that has been followed for oil. non-hydro renewable energy accounts for 15. Page] In response to high gas prices. renewable energy facilities are also not vulnerable to supply shortages or disruptions. May 2007. Issue 4. as coal generation begins to compete with more expensive natural gas. Page] Renewable energy diversifies the energy portfolio by meeting a much larger portion of U. By 2020.5 percent of total electric power generation (Figure 3).S. Using EIA assumptions. However.25 In the earlier years of the forecast.” The Electricity Journal Volume 20.RPS AFF 1. and the declining productivity of North American gas wells. renewable energy facilities (except large hydropower dams) do not present inviting targets for sabotage or attack. And because they do not use volatile fuel or produce dangerous wastes. new growth in both coal and natural gas are still needed under the RPS to meet the projected increase in energy demand by consumers. the increased renewable energy generation displaces more natural gas. Jeff Deyette and Steve Clemmer 4/23/07 (“The Projected Impacts of a National Renewable Portfolio Standard. renewable energy generation displaces more coal.” The Electricity Journal Volume 20. electricity demand under a 20 percent national RPS (UCS assumptions).S.” The Electricity Journal Volume 20. Jeff Deyette and Steve Clemmer 4/23/07 (“The Projected Impacts of a National Renewable Portfolio Standard. By 2020. price spikes.

RPS AFF 1. As with pricing systems. Typically. thereby enhancing economic efficiency. the Danish government paid over 100 million Euros in 1998 alone in annual subsidies to wind generators. which helps with political feasibility. Worldwatch Institute. the policy can be directly linked to environmental targets given that renewable: have zero emissions (except for local air emissions from combusting biomass). purchasing renewable electricity through a bidding process. works in reverse of pricing laws: governments set targets and let the market determine prices. Second. Sustainable Fossil Fuels: the unusual suspect in the quest for clean and enduring energy Four characteristics help explain the emerging interest in the RPS. the policy's impact on consumer prices is small (as long as bidding and price setting in the two markets are segmented). Worldwatch Paper # 169. Sawin. Fourth. the policy minimizes government budgetary involvement because customers pay producers directly for the extra financial cost of renewables. School of Resource and Environmental Management-Simon Fraser University. In contrast. and add flexibility by enabling utilities and customers to trade. 2004. investors and generators comply with the quota by installing capacity. May. or RPS. governments mandate a minimum share of capacity or generation to come from renewable sources. Professor. and can allow for trading and expanding renewable energy markets between states or countries. the quota system. sell. because the supply portfolio blends a small share of high-cost renewables with a large share of low-cost conventional electricity. or buy credits to meet obligations. p. First. They can add value to renewable sales. or buying “green certificates” or “renewable energy credits. 2005. the additional costs of renewable energy are borne by taxpayers or electricity consumers. Climate—Pollution Solvency . 35 The second type of regulatory access policy.” Generally certificates are awarded to producers for the renewable electricity they generate. Third. used in several US states). Mainstreaming Renewable Energy in the 21st Century. Quota system like the RPS is a mechanism to promote renewables Janet L.0 34/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab RPS is a cost-effective way to promote transition to renewables Mark Jaccard. and the selection of renewables can be left to market forces through a competitive bidding process.With the most common form of quota system (such as the Renewables Portfolio Standard. ongoing competition for the renewable market share maintains an incentive for renewables producers to reduce costs.

state were at risk to premature death from air pollution.newenergychoices.RPS AFF 1. In 2003.271 Compiling data from the American Cancer Society. June. particulate matter and carbon dioxide over the course of its 20-year lifetime — enough to cover the entire city of Oakland in a pile of toxic pollution 40 stories high. a national non.000 daily incidents of upper respiratory symptoms among the 33 million people living within 250 miles of the plants. sulfur dioxides. a national non.269 Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health estimated that the air pollution from conventional energy sources kills between 50.000 Americans each year. June. These researchers found that the emissions from just 9 power plants in Illinois directly contributed to an annual risk of 300 premature deaths. fossil fuel use (for all energy sectors. 14. not just electricity) was responsible for 99 percent of the country’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.S. a national non.pdf) C. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. June. and 60 pounds of toxic mercury (Hg) emissions.newenergychoices.000 Americans every year. and Environmental Protection Agency.274 One study assessing the environmental potential of a 580 MW wind farm located on the Altamont Pass near San Francisco. and 96 percent of its nitrous oxides emissions (NOx). 93 percent of its sulfur dioxide (SOx) emissions.5 tons of sulfur dioxide 3. 275 The study estimated that the wind farm would displace more than 24 billion pounds of nitrous oxides.S. http://www.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. Because children spend more time outside and have smaller airways that necessitate more rapid breathing. 69 tons of sulfur dioxide and 1800 pounds of toxic mercury during its 30-year lifespan.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.newenergychoices.S.pdf) A national RPS reduces air pollution.000 asthma attacks. they are much more vulnerable to develop illnesses associated with air pollution. 2007. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).profit organization committed to reforming U. http://www.000 and 70. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). a national RPS would substantially decrease air pollution in the U. 2007.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.profit organization committed to reforming U. 2007. and more than 400. the Clean the Air Grassroots Network estimated that residents in every single U. A single 1 MW wind turbine (operating at only 30% capacity) displaces 96 tons of nitrous oxides. Harvard School of Public Health. California.pdf) .2 tons of nitrous oxides.profit organization committed to reforming U. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).000 and 70.500 tons of carbon dioxide.273 By promoting technologies that displace conventional forms of electricity generation. Air pollution from conventional power plants kills between 50. for example. 2. 272 Children are particularly vulnerable to the pollution from fossil fuels. Air Quality Conventional electricity generation is by far the largest source of air pollutants that harm human health and contribute to global warming.S.0 35/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Climate—Pollution Impacts National RPS significantly reduces air pollution Dr. A single 1 MW wind turbine running at only 30 percent of capacity for one year displaces more than 1.276 Power plants release toxic amounts of pollution like mercury Dr. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). Conventional Utilities lead to thousands of deaths every year because of pollution Dr. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). http://www.S. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). concluded that the turbines displaced hundreds of thousands of tons of air pollutants each year that would have otherwise resulted from fossil fuel combustion.

coal-fired power plants alone released about 100.285 Most Americans do not ingest mercury directly. The EPA estimates that as many as 3 percent of women of child-bearing age eat sufficient amounts of fish to be at risk from mercury exposure. but accumulate small amounts of the poisonous metal through the consumption of fish. emissions of mercury. U. Dietary mercury is almost completely absorbed into the blood and distributed to all tissues including the brain.287 In 2004. . Conventional power plants are responsible for nearly one third of all U. it also readily passes through the placenta to the fetus and fetal brain.S.000 lbs. In 2003.RPS AFF 1.S.0 DDI 2008 36/136 Strange & Serrano Lab A comprehensive EPA study on mercury noted that epidemics of mercury poisoning following high-doses in Japan and Iraq have demonstrated that neurotoxicity is of greatest concern when mercury exposure occurs to the developing fetus. of mercury into the nation’s air. for example. 43 states had to issue mercury advisories to warn the public to avoid consuming contaminated fish from in-state water sources.

At least 30. cosmetics and detergents are blamed for causing changes in the genitals of some animals. About 70. on a squeaky-clean planet. and 1. staff writer for BBC. with around 1.  Air: The World Health Organization (WHO) says 3 million people are killed worldwide by outdoor air pollution annually from vehicles and industrial emissions.500 new ones appearing annually.stm). where former factories and power stations can leave waste like heavy metals in the soil. Some man-made chemicals. . It can also occur in developing countries. from fish to mammals . especially in the young.and to us.bbc. Agriculture can pollute land with pesticides.a breakdown product of spermicides.0 37/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Climate—Pollution Impacts Pollution causes millions of deaths and severely hurts all aspects of the environment Alex Kirby (British journalist. Affected species include polar bears .RPS AFF 1. One study says 7-20% of cancers are attributable to poor air and pollution in homes and workplaces. or finding enough water. The WHO. When we think of chemical contamination it is often images of events like Bhopal that come to mind.uk/2/hi/science/nature/4086809. But the problem is widespread. endocrine disruptors like phthalates and nonylphenol .  Water: Diseases carried in water are responsible for 80% of illnesses and deaths in developing countries..000 chemicals are on the market. Chronic problem Chemicals are a frequent pollutant. One of the main themes of Planet Under Pressure is the way many of the Earth's environmental crises reinforce one another. And when the contamination reaches rivers it damages life there.we do not have the option of growing food.so not even the Arctic is immune. and can even create dead zones off the coast. Most are in poor countries. but it is vital. sometimes used for dumping pesticides.6 million indoors through using solid fuel. because pollution is pervasive and often life-threatening. specializing in environmental issues. as in the Gulf of Mexico.1 million people die from diarrhoeal diseases associated with poor water. 12/13/2004. concerned about chemicals that persist and build up in the body. says we may "be conducting a largescale experiment with children's health". Each year 2. Living in a way that is less damaging to the Earth is not easy.co. Pollution is an obvious example . nitrate-rich fertilisers and slurry from livestock. killing a child every eight seconds. And the chemicals climb the food chain. Yet time and again it is the quest for wealth that generates much of the mess in the first place. Soil: Contaminated land is a problem in industrialised countries.000 are thought never to have been comprehensively tested for their possible risks to people. Cutting waste and clearing up pollution costs money. but on one increasingly tarnished and trashed by the way we have used it so far. http://news.

htm).org/pubs/EIP%252010%2520worst %2520C02%2520states%2520news%2520release%2520FINAL. CO2 emissions keep rising and are the largest factor in climate change EIP (“U.9 degrees Celsius over the past century and that human activity affecting the atmosphere is “very likely” an important driving factor. as well as changes in the fuel used in electricity generation. the electric power industry’s carbon dioxide emissions have risen 5. climate change pollution. anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions in 2006 (Figure 32).doe. http://www.environmentalintegrity.S. in turn.gov/bookshelf/brochures/greenhouse/Chapter1. rising concentrations of greenhouse gases produce an increase in the average surface temperature of the Earth over time. storm severity. and sea level commonly referred to as “climate change.” It goes on to state. Energy-related carbon dioxide emissions. and natural gas.6 and 0. according to new analysis by the nonprofit and nonpartisan Environmental Integrity Project (EIP) of data from the U.233. Energy use is largely driven by economic growth with short-term fluctuations in its growth rate created by weather patterns affecting heating and cooling needs.” Assessments by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) suggest that the Earth’s climate has warmed between 0. “The observed widespread warming of the atmosphere and ocean. together with ice mass loss. support the conclusion that it is extremely unlikely that global climate change of the past 50 years can be explained without external forcing.RPS AFF 1.S. power plants climbed 2.” 1According to the IPCC “very likely” indicates that there is a 90 percent chance that this is the case. represented 82 percent of total U. What Are the Sources of Greenhouse Gases? In the United States.pdf+CO2+emissions+largest+ %22global+warming&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us&client=firefox-a).9 percent in 2007. Power plan Carbon Dioxide Emissions rose 3 percent in 2007. Rising temperatures may. The connection between energy use and carbon dioxide emissions is explored in the box on the reverse side (Figure 4).7 percent since 1997.year increase since 1998. coal.9 percent since 2002 and 11. May 2008. DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Climate—uniqueness What Effect Do Greenhouse Gases Have on Climate Change? In computer-based models. greenhouse gas emissions come primarily from the combustion of fossil fuels in energy use. the biggest single. .S.1 The IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report (Summary for Policymakers) states. Poor progress report on efforts to rein in greenhouse gases: Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from U.104/search? q=cache:Uir72jkHYoYJ:www. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).S.167. resulting from the combustion of petroleum. http://64. Now the single largest factor in U. produce changes in precipitation patterns. and very likely that it is not due to known natural causes alone.” 2007.eia. “Most of the observed increase in globally averaged temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations. Biggest one-year jump in nearly a decade.0 38/136 CO2 emissions are the largest cause of climate change EIA (official energy statistics from the US gov.S.

According to the EIP report. with another up to 15.104/search? q=cache:Uir72jkHYoYJ:www.” 2007. total. http://64. .environmentalintegrity.233. Department of Energy. Power plan Carbon Dioxide Emissions rose 3 percent in 2007. according to the U. Coal-fired power plants alone released more than 1.RPS AFF 1. the consumption of electricity accounted for more than 2. The Department of Energy projects that carbon dioxide emissions from power generation will increase 19 percent between 2007 and 2030. An additional 4. Biggest one-year jump in nearly a decade.org/pubs/EIP%252010%2520worst %2520C02%2520states%2520news%2520release%2520FINAL.and that number is only increasing EIP (“U.S.5 percent of total emissions from manmade sources.000 megawatts expected to come online in the 2008 through 2012 timeframe.115 megawatts of new coal-fired generating capacity was added between 2000 and 2007.9 billion tons.3 billion tons of CO2 in 2006.0 39/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Climate—uniqueness Current power plants are using billions of tons of CO2. due to new or expanded coal plants.pdf+CO2+emissions+largest+ %22global+warming&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us&client=firefox-a).S.S.167. or more than 39. or nearly one third of the U.

0 40/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Climate—links National RPS would displace coal.newenergychoices. http://www. 15% from coal. fuel at other power plants is not consumed. http://www. June. more polluting sources of energy. gas. . and 10% from electricity imports. When wind power projects generate electricity. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). • Renewable energy offsets nuclear power. National RPS would reduce CO2 emissions and ensure clean air American Wind Energy Association (“Federal RPS Factsheet.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. the Department f Energy determined that “the imposition of a national RPS would lead to lower generation from natural gas and coal facilities. Renewable energies could offset almost ½ ton of carbon dioxide for every MW generated.300 MW) of the state’s peak electricity demand. a national non.newenergychoices. equivalent to taking nearly 71 million cars off the road. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). 10% from oil. and Oregon found that renewable generation displaces new nuclear reactors and decreases the mining of uranium. That is important because electricity generation is the largest industrial source of air pollution in the U. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris.S. and Texas. a national non.pdf) A national RPS would displace coal and natural gas. In a 2002 assessment of a 10% national RPS. North Carolina.profit organization committed to reforming U. A 20% by 2020 national RPS could reduce as much carbon dioxide as taking 71 million cars off the nation’s roads. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). 2007. http://www.awea.org/legislative/pdf/Federal_RPS_Factsheet. and nuclear power Dr. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris.S.” 2007. Studies from Michigan.” Analysts have confirmed this trade-off in RPS states like Michigan.pdf) A national RPS reduces greenhouse gas emissions.pdf) Helps Achieve Cleaner Air: Adopting a national RPS of 20 percent by 2020 can help reduce emissions of harmful air pollutants and of carbon dioxide (a leading greenhouse gas). Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). A UCS study found that a 20 percent RPS would reduce carbon dioxide CO2 emissions by 434 million metric tons per year by 2020 – a reduction of 15% below “business-as-usual levels”. June.RPS AFF 1. Wind power offsets other.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. New York. 65% of the energy it displaced would come from natural gas.5 National RPS substantially reduces greenhouse gas emissions Dr.4 A recent New York study found that if wind energy supplied only 10% (3.S. 2007. Virginia.profit organization committed to reforming U.

Two decades later. 4/3/2006)." said Barnett.tucsoncitizen.com/p/articles/mi_qn4188/is_20060403/ai_n16203776. heat-trapping gas and aerosol concentrations need to be stabilized so that their net radiative effect is less than that of 450 parts per million (ppm) CO2 (3).php).0 41/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Climate—At: Inevitable We must act now to prevent the worst impacts of global warming Seth Borenstein (staff writer for the Associated Press. the Arctic will be free of sea ice in the summer. to avoid exceeding this 2° target. "I believe we are past the point of no return." Hansen. and if developing countries limit emissions growth and impose similar reductions later in the century. “Scientists on global warming: Act now. . Hansen spent his time on the question of whether it's too late to do anything about it. do you sit there till you die or do you take Lasix (blood pressure medicine)?" It takes decades to stabilize emissions of greenhouse gases -. This could be achieved if the United States and other industrial nations cut current emissions by 60 to 80% by 2050. "What does the point of no return mean? To me. cars and factories -.” 6/24/2008. Daniel Lashof.which are spewed by power plants. "The Arctic is the first tipping point and it's occurring exactly the way we said it would. co-director of Stanford's Center for Environmental Science Policy.RPS AFF 1. His answer: There's still time to stop the worst. according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. There is growing concern that global warming of more than 2°C from preindustrial levels could have dangerous climatic consequences (1.” 12/22/2006." said Schneider.pdf). . "You don't give up.and another half-century after that to slow revvedup ocean warming. http://www. all are in the Natural Resource Defense Council in Washington. http://www. “Global warming too advanced to reverse?” http://findarticles. "We see a tipping point occurring right before our eyes. echoing work by other scientists. . Immediate action is key to stop the worst impacts of global warming Seth Borenstein (staff writer for the Associated Press. The question is: How much worse is it going to get? That is a case in which we can control our destiny -. Since then. centrist approach to global warming legislation.com/ss/tech/89152. It is estimated that. 14 years have been hotter. said that in five to 10 years. The year of Hansen's original testimony was the world's hottest year on record. it means we've reached a point where we are seeing the impacts of global warming ." Hansen told the AP before the luncheon. "If you have high blood pressure.org/cgi/reprint/314/5800/764. but not much time." he said. 2).if we act now. so "you're stuck with say 100 years of warming.sciencemag." Effects of global warming could be seriously reduced by quickly decreasing CO2 levels David Doniger et al (Antonia Herzog. “An ambitious.

Conventional energy uses up substantially more land than renewables Dr. 2007. Less than 40 square miles could support 38.newenergychoices. A nuclear reactor requires 600 times as much water to generate the same amount of electricity as a wind farm. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).newenergychoices. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).0 42/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Climate—Co2 solvency National RPS significantly reduces greenhouse gas Dr.profit organization committed to reforming U. A coal-fired plant uses 500 times as much water as a wind farm. conventional coal-fired power plants use as much as 100 square kilometers of land for every GW of electricity generated.• Renewable energy offsets nuclear power. Solar PV uses up to 90% less land.000 Americans each .000 wind turbines producing up to 4% of the nation’s electricity demand each year.pdf) A national RPS would displace coal and natural gas. June. New York. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. Virginia. June. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS).RPS AFF 1.newenergychoices.pdf) Renewable energies require less land then conventional power plants. the Department f Energy determined that “the imposition of a national RPS would lead to lower generation from natural gas and coal facilities. In a 2002 assessment of a 10% national RPS.S. Over 95% of the land used for wind farms remains free for other uses like ranching and farming.pdf) A national RPS reduces greenhouse gas emissions. A single 100-watt solar panel saves up to 3. North Carolina. http://www.profit organization committed to reforming U. replace coal and gas. and Oregon found that renewable generation displaces new nuclear reactors and decreases the mining of uranium. 2007. and Texas.” Analysts have confirmed this trade-off in RPS states like Michigan. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. • A national RPS reduces air pollution. • A national RPS saves billions of gallons of water. and would overall help the environment Dr.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). A 20% by 2020 national RPS could reduce as much carbon dioxide as taking 71 million cars off the nation’s roads. a national non. http://www. transportation and generation. Including the land used for mining. http://www. and highway retaining walls.3 billion gallons each day).000 gallons of water over its lifetime. America’s entire current electricity demand could be generated by installing PV panels on only 7% of the country’s available roofs. a national non. A gas-fired plant uses 250 times as much.S.000 and 70.profit organization committed to reforming U. parking lots. Studies from Michigan. a national non.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. Wind farms use up to 75% less land. June. 2007. National RPS would reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Air pollution from conventional power plants kills between 50. Renewable energies could offset almost ½ ton of carbon dioxide for every MW generated. Conventional and nuclear power plants will soon be withdrawing more water for electricity production than America’s farmers use for all the irrigated agriculture in the entire nation (over 3.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.S.

A single 1 MW wind turbine (operating at only 30% capacity) displaces 96 tons of nitrous oxides.0 DDI 2008 43/136 Strange & Serrano Lab year. • Renewable energies require less land then conventional power plants. . 69 tons of sulfur dioxide and 1800 pounds of toxic mercury during its 30-year lifespan. America’s entire current electricity demand could be generated by installing PV panels on only 7% of the country’s available roofs.000 wind turbines producing up to 4% of the nation’s electricity demand each year. Less than 40 square miles could support 38. and highway retaining walls. Wind farms use up to 75% less land. conventional coal-fired power plants use as much as 100 square kilometers of land for every GW of electricity generated. transportation and generation. Including the land used for mining. Solar PV uses up to 90% less land. Renewable energies could offset almost ½ ton of carbon dioxide for every MW generated. Over 95% of the land used for wind farms remains free for other uses like ranching and farming. • A national RPS reduces greenhouse gas emissions.RPS AFF 1. parking lots. A 20% by 2020 national RPS could reduce as much carbon dioxide as taking 71 million cars off the nation’s roads.

roughly equivalent to all the water withdrawals for irrigated agriculture in the entire United States. require massive supplies of water to cool reactor cores and spent nuclear fuel rods. for example. Thus. natural gas. In Georgia. consumes around 7. . continuing to rely on fossil fuel-fired and nuclear generators could spark a water scarcity crisis.. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). Water Conservation If projected electricity demand is met using water-intensive fossil fuel and nuclear reactors.or ground-water source).RPS AFF 1. 247 Data from the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) also confirms that every type of traditional power plant consumes and withdraws vast amounts of water. if new power plants continue to be built with evaporative cooling.244 In 2006. they accounted for almost 40 percent of all freshwater withdrawals (water diverted or withdrawn from a surface. Coal plants also use water to clean and process fuel. but actually “consumes” (primarily as lost water vapor) 33 million gallons per day from the local supply. June. One nuclear plant in Georgia. Because much of the water is turned to steam. they contribute even more to the nation’s water scarcity. closed-loop cooling technology convert more water to steam that is vented to the atmosphere. the 3. substantial amounts are lost to the local water table entirely. http://www.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. the Department of Energy warned that consumption of water for electricity production could more than double by 2030. Conventional power plants use thousands of gallons of water for the condensing portion of their thermodynamic cycle. and nuclear facilities consume about 3.profit organization committed to reforming U. Perhaps the most important—and least discussed—advantage to a federal RPS is its ability to displace electricity generation that is extremely water-intensive. less efficient plants can be much worse. in particular.913 gallons of water for every MWh of electricity it generates. Advanced power plant systems that rely on re-circulating. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). withdraws an average of 57 million gallons every day from the Altamaha River.245 A conventional 500 MW coal plant. coal. America will soon be withdrawing more water for electricity production than for farming. In 2006.000 gallons of water per minute. or the equivalent of 17 Olympic-sized swimming pools every day.3 billion gallons per day. for instance.0 44/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Climate—Water internal Federal RPS is key to avoid the oncoming water crisis and save billions of gallons a day Dr.000 Georgia homes. This staggering amount is equal to the entire country’s water consumption in 1995. and all traditional plants lose water through evaporative loss.400 MW Sherer coal facility consumes as much as 9. The nation’s oil.newenergychoices. enough to service more than 196. to 7.248 Nuclear reactors.249 With electricity demand expected to grow by approximately 50 percent in the next 25 years.246 Older. while modern power plants may reduce water withdrawals by up to 10 percent.pdf) B. Closed-loop systems also rely on greater amounts of water for cleaning and therefore return less water to the original source. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. a national non.3 billion gallons of water each day. Newer technologies. while they withdraw less water.S. actually consume more. 2007.

As a result. global warming is expected to induce a dramatic loss of snow-pack as more precipitation falls as rain.S. http://www.newenergychoices.newenergychoices. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). a national non. population is expected to grow by about 70 million people in the next 25 years. Rather than improving the ecosystem. because of water concerns. 255 Consequently. even under “normal” conditions.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. and the extensive array of cooling towers. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). Assuming the latest Census Bureau projections. June. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). In riparian Climate—Water internal .0 45/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Federal RPS is key to avoid the oncoming water crisis and save billions of gallons a day Dr.pdf) The electric utility industry’s vast appetite for water has serious consequences. and underwater vents used by most plants have been documented to severely damage riparian environments.252 Most state water managers expect either local or regional water shortages within the next 10 years.S.259 Drawing water into a plant often kills fish and other aquatic organisms. such alterations usually promote excessive plant growth and decay. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. 47 states in the country reported drought conditions during the summer of 2002.profit organization committed to reforming U.S. ponds.258 Power plant water heating Kills entire ecosystems Dr. numerous studies have suggested that the hydrology of the region will be fundamentally altered with increased flood risks in the spring and reductions of snow in the winter.253 In fact. June. for example. In the Pacific Northwest. http://www. the thermal pollution from centralized power plants can induce eutrophication—a process where the warmer temperature alters the chemical composition of the water.254 Water shortages risk becoming more acute in the coming years as climate change alters precipitation patterns.2 billion coal facility in Pueblo. Colorado.251 Such population growth is already threatening to overwhelm existing supplies of fresh and potable water.257 Xcel energy had to similarly cancel a $1. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).pdf) The Argonne National Laboratory has documented how power plants have withdrawn hundreds of millions of gallons of water each day for cooling purposes and then discharged the heated water back to the same or a nearby water body. In some cases.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.256 During the steamy August of 2006. resulting in a rapid increase of nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorous. the record heat sparked unplanned reactor shutdowns in Michigan and Minnesota as nuclear plant operators scrambled to find enough water to cool radioactive fuel cores. This process of “once-through” cooling presents potential environmental impacts by impinging aquatic organisms in intake screens and by affecting aquatic ecosystems by discharge effluent that is far hotter than the surrounding surface waters. 2007. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. 2007. power retailers in the region have expressed concern that large hydroelectric and nuclear facilities will have to be shut down due to lack of adequate water for electricity generation and cooling. a national non. favoring certain weedy species over others and severely reducing water quality. the U. Few new reservoirs have been built since 1980 and some regions have seen groundwater levels drop as much as 300 to 900 feet over the past 50 years as aquifers extract water faster than the natural rate of replenishment. both for human consumption and the environment. according to a recent survey.profit organization committed to reforming U.RPS AFF 1.

This form of thermal pollution has been known to decrease the aesthetic and recreational value of rivers. . the enhanced growth of choking vegetation can collapse entire ecosystems. and estuaries and complicate drinking water treatment. lakes.RPS AFF 1.0 DDI 2008 46/136 Strange & Serrano Lab environments.

and the sanctions prompted the United States to act quickly to remove the subsidies. former EPA lawyer (Peter.RPS AFF 1. It is essential that this situation be monitored and actions taken if these industries become disadvantaged. Japan. cement and lime. behavior. Global Warming: The Gathering Storm. noting that EU emissions allowance trading scheme (ETS) "has the potential to lead to even further increases in power prices that could cause significant damage to EU competitiveness.pur. chemicals and others. Canada. the United States underestimated the EU's resolve to impose trade sanctions.com/pubs/4419."7 Several non-governmental organizations also have advocated for trade sanctions against the United States. AG) There is little question that CO2 reduction measures will increase the cost of energy in the EU. http://www. As a result. Australia.S. demonstrate that the EU will use trade sanctions when necessary to force a change in U. and the other industrialized nations that have ratified Kyoto. Environmental & Public Utility Practice Group of the Cozen O'Connor law firm. and Australia. will be in clear violation of the WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures.S. the EU successfully implemented countervailing duties of several billion dollars that were upheld by the WTO Appellate Body. in turn. Nor is there any reason to question that the EU will use trade sanctions as a hammer when it finds that the U.. ratifies and implements the Kyoto Protocol.S. there cannot be fair and free trade with the U. including the United States. In both cases.. Annex I countries that have not undertaken comparable measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.cfm. A fundamental impact of Kyoto therefore will be a global imbalance in the costs of production among the United States.S. lower costs of production. arguing that: Until the U. This imbalance will prompt the EU to seriously examine the option of imposing some form of countervailing duty on U.S. the sales corporation/extraterritorial income (FSC/ETI) and the steel import cases. The EU clearly is concerned about the potential for competitive harm associated with the recent greenhouse gas emissions program. and the U. especially for energy intensive industries such as pulp and paper. will enjoy a competitive advantage in the form of lower energy costs and.9 . .S. Two recent examples. In both cases. iron and steel.8 Recent WTO Successes Against the U.S. and virtually the rest of the industrialized world.0 47/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Trade—inherency Trade war is inevitable absent Us concessions to Europe on climate Fontaine 4 – co-chairs the Energy. imports to compensate for the disadvantage and to fund additional CO2 offset projects under the CDM mechanism. has garnered an unfair competitive advantage by subsidizing exports.

2 These countries have frequently linked action on renewable energy and climate change together because they realize that the combustion of fossil fuels greatly contributes to climate change. Environment 49. Necessary but Insufficient. and Turkey have adopted mandatory renewable energy or climate change targets. and they do not like fouling their own the United States. Brazil. the country remains unprepared to face the unprecedented energy and environmental challenges that loom in the future. Norway. the federal government has set no national target for renewable energy.0 48/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Trade—20% key US energy policy is falling far behind Europe’s twenty percent RPS Sovacool 7 (Benjamin and Jack Barkenbus. Indonesia. And in terms of climate policy in Europe. then–British Prime Minister Tony China. Sri Lanka . South Korea.6.RPS AFF 1. the European Union Greenhouse Gas Emission Trading Scheme (EU ETS) calls for mandatory reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and allows countries to trade carbon credits. Ebsco.1 His announcement complements the policies of 17 other European Union countries that have also set some type of national. Nicaragua. nests. Israel. established no national cap on greenhouse gas emissions. Switzerland. As a result of the administration’s unwillingness to take forceful actions commensurate with the nation’s leadership and responsibilities. In the past five years. in . AG) Blair announced that the United Kingdom would support a 20 percent mandatory target for renewable power as a share of European generation capacity. Meanwhile. and refused to create a nationwide trading system for carbon credits. IN EUROPE this past February. mandatory target for promoting renewable energy.

they can take place only when supplies are tight. senior energy economist for Goldman Sachs.S. Army. They then plummet just as quickly. argues Weissman. The End of Oil. This so-called demand destruction is one reason Greenspan warned in Lune 2003 that a gas shortage could effectively wipe out the struggling economic recovery. The real legacy of the MAD concept is this side of the MAD coin that is almost never discussed.S.S.0 49/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Natural Gas 2AC Natural gas reliance for electricity makes economic volatility inevitable Roberts 4 – award winning energy journalist (Paul. the stress on WMD) now possessed by some 25 nations. When U. at least for many decades rapid escalation to full WMD exchange occurs. and at least two hundred thousand U. energy crises are likely to become progressively more frequent. where gas supplies are closer to hand. of Distinguished American Scientists. desperate nations take desperate actions. are almost certain to be released. which encourages big consumers to switch to gas — anything that might conceivably increase need for natural gas or gas-generated electricity — sends prices skyward. As the studies showed. economy will be sustained during the remainder of this decade. it is widely speculated that the price hikes in the summer of 2003 stemmed in part from gas sellers' withholding supply to squeeze" prices up at the margins. especially in an economy increasingly powered by gas-fired electricity.) Yet it is also true that such manipulations cannot occur in a loose market. adversaries and potential adversaries are then compelled to launch on perception of preparations by one's adversary. as appears to be the trend. p 183. no extra gas to meet any unanticipated demand and the market knows it. volatility is inevitable — and devastating. forces there. while new. suppose a starving North Korea {[7]} launches nuclear weapons upon Japan and South Korea. Director of the Assoc. from a brief cold snap to a heat wave. Industries like plastics makers that depend on natural gas for a "feedstock" are shutting down plants and moving overseas. "there is no readily apparent means to meet the incremental electricity needs of the U. Prior to of the WMD arsenals that will be unleashed."25 Without substantial new gas production. Or suppose a desperate China — whose long-range nuclear missiles (some) can reach the United States — attacks Taiwan. and perhaps most of the biosphere.S. In such an environment. As an example. Without effective defense.htm) economic collapse. in a spasmodic suicidal response.E former LTC U. more severe and more disruptive of economic activity.com/EnergyCrisis-Bearden. entire U. gas prices spiked to ten dollars per one million Btu's in 2001. are already on site within the United States itself {[8]}. told a congressional hearing last year. the only chance a nation has to survive at all is to launch immediate full-bore pre-emptive strikes and try to take out its perceived foes as rapidly and massively as possible.seaspower. In addition to immediate responses. once a few nukes are launched." Jeffrey Currie. Such volatility is quite attractive to energy speculators who are willing to gamble large sums buying What this means is that gas in the hope that prices will continue to rise. 6/24. longer-term sources of natural gas supply are being developed. to the point where the arsenals of weapons of mass destruction ( conflict. economy over the next five to seven years raising serious question as to how the growth of the U. Today.S. escalating it significantly. AG) today there is no slack in the system. or even a spike in oil prices. http://www. utilities are raising power rates. (In fact. Fellow Emeritus @ Alpha Foundation’s Institute for Advanced Study. including U. factories were shuttered. manufacturing jobs disappeared.S. the mutual treaties involved in such scenarios will quickly draw other nations into the the final nations will have increased the intensity and number of their conflicts. Strategic nuclear studies have shown for decades that. a great percent will destroy civilization as . under such extreme stress conditions.RPS AFF 1. The resulting great Armageddon we know it. "Energy is rapidly becoming a major limiting factor on economic growth."36 Nuke war Bearden 2k History bears out that (T. does not improve. The slightest blip in demand.S. As gas prices rise.S. "If the core energy infrastructure in the U.

Low margins and various competitive priorities have encouraged industry consolidation. aggressive. Individual wind turbines average out each other in electricity supply. when turbines do malfunction. larger penetration rates are needed to ensure energy security. or forty-four percent of all electricity sales in 1995. federal intervention is needed to improve electricity reliability. For example. 21 The Electric Power Research Institute projects the annual costs of poor power reliability at $ 119 billion. Penetration rates of renewable energy technologies nationwide are still low--around three percent of overall installed electricity capacity in 2007. Electrical and power systems engineers have long held the principle that the larger a system becomes. and members of the Ku Klux Klan and San Joaquin Militia have been convicted of attempting to attack electricity infrastructure. 20 Improved reliability of supply is important. which they would use to chaff substations and disrupt transmission lines.S. benefit of wind power's greater technical availability in the United States. or intentional attack and disruption. L." 26 Several recent trends in the electric utility industry have increased the vulnerability of its infrastructure. wind farms of hundreds or thousands of turbines have even greater reliability because it is unlikely that all turbines would be down at the same time. for example. AG) First. and subsystems are highly integrated across the entire business." 27 Federal promotion of renewable energy on a national scale can improve the security of the grid by decentralizing electricity generation. Department of Energy ("DOE") estimates that while power interruptions often last only seconds or minutes. The U." not "on the order of a lineman putting things up a pole. Indeed. 23 Internationally. the strain on the system is insignificant because so many consumers are drawing from the grid that it is entirely likely another consumer will be drawing less to make up the difference. Notwithstanding intense media focus on the security dangers from nuclear reactors and natural gas facilities. & Pol'y 5. in 1975 the New World Liberation Front bombed assets of the Pacific Gas and Electric Company more than ten times. Contrary to what some opponents of renewable energy assert. Federal intervention in the form of a nation-wide SBC or RPS aiming for targets of ten to twenty percent by 2020 would expand the diversity of technologies used to access renewable resources. Replacement time would be "on the order of Iraq. with fewer and bigger facilities and intensive use of assets in one place. Collective state efforts are expected to increase this amount to only around four percent by 2015 and five percent by 2030. is a few motivated people with minivans and a couple of mortars and balloons. to capture such benefits. Even when renewable resources like wind and solar are concentrated. well-coordinated assault on the electric power grid could devastate the electricity sector. 22 However. When a single electricity consumer. arranged in complex circuits prone to mechanical failure. they take far less time to recover than massive conventional power plants or nuclear reactors that have literally millions of individual components. As the National Research Council noted. Furthermore. 25 A deliberate. "control is more centralized. but the environmental benefits of renewable energy only really start to accrue at penetration rates well above this rate. a November 2006 study assessing the widespread use of wind power in Minnesota [*7] concluded that "wind generation does make a calculable contribution to system reliability" by decreasing the risk of large. 18 So when the wind is not blowing through one Because the technical availability of one wind turbine rivals that of a single conventional power plant. IMPROVING ENERGY SECURITY Second. Demand variations between individual consumers are mitigated by grid interconnection in exactly this manner. the tendency for them to produce power in incremental and modular amounts makes it much more difficult to disrupt large segments of generation. many utilities and system operators have increased their reliance on automation and computerization. 24 Some caution that all it would take to cause a "cascade of power failures across the country. it makes them more secure--and thus resilient to accidental power outages and failure. renewable energy technologies must be spatially deployed in every state and must have national penetration rates above ten percent. To improve their operational efficiency. starts drawing more electricity than the system allocated for each consumer. as blackouts and brownouts exact a considerable toll on the American economy. the variability of renewable resources becomes easier to manage the more they are deployed. 19 Analysts already confirmed the wind farm. The International Energy Agency has noted that centralized energy facilities create significant targets for terrorism because attacking a few . unexpected outages. it is likely blowing harder through another. they cost consumers an average of $ 150 to 400 billion every year. spare parts inventories have been reduced. This is because the geographical dispersion of generators not only improves their overall reliability. This "averaging" works in a similar fashion on the supply side of the grid. organized paramilitaries such as the Farabundo-Marti National Liberation Front were able to interrupt more than ninety percent of electric service in El Salvador and even had manuals for attacking power systems. The security issues facing the modern electric utility grid are almost as serious as they are invisible.0 50/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Blackouts 2AC National RPS prevents grid failures which cause terrorism and economic collapse Sovacool and Cooper 7 (Benjamin and Christopher. the nation's power grid represents an equally serious threat to energy security. 8 Sustainable Dev. the less reserve capacity it needs." costing billions of dollars in direct and indirect damage.RPS AFF 1.

and distributed energy systems minimizes the risk of accidents and grid failures.0 51/136 facilities can cause large power outages. and does not require transporting or storing hazardous or radioactive materials.RPS AFF 1. 29 A national RPS or SBC promoting renewables could greatly contribute to the overall security of the nation's electric infrastructure by forcing more technologies into the portfolio of all American utilities. Analysts have tended to refer to renewable energy systems (and other forms of distributed generation such as fuel cells and small-scale cogeneration units) as "supple" power technologies because they are modular suited to dispersed siting. decentralizing energy facilities and providing power through more modular DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab 28 In contrast to the security risks of large centralized generators. .

Individual wind turbines average out each other [34] So when the wind is not blowing through one wind farm. making it easier for the system operator to predict and manage changes in supply as they appear within the overall system. It will have to respond to the shutdown of a 500 MW coal fired plant or a 1. Indeed. [35] Because the technical availability of one wind turbine rivals that of a single conventional power plant. . [38] Moreover. Utilities can harness wind on windy days. [36] the The catch is that penetration of renewable energy technologies has to be large enough to achieve these benefits of diversification. A Matter of Stability and Equity. the strain on the system is insignificant because so many consumers are drawing from the grid that it is entirely likely another consumer will be drawing less to make up the difference. Energy & Environment 19. for example. For instance. unexpected outages. it is likely blowing harder through another. This “averaging” works in a similar fashion on the supply side of the grid.000 MW nuclear plant instantly. sun on sunny days.RPS AFF 1. and so on. conventional systems: Variations in wind energy are smoother. intermittent generators are not only likely to be geographically dispersed but also a national RPS would expand the diversity of technologies used to access renewable resources. increasing the penetration of renewable energy above 20 percent improves the diversification of the electric utility grid in another dimension. AG) A national RPS must ensure that the ultimate penetration of renewable energy technologies is sufficient by setting a target above 20 percent by 2020 and 25 percent by 2025. IgentaConnect. When a single electricity consumer. Technological dispersion increases system reliability by decreasing dependence on any one intermittent source of energy. wind farms of hundreds or thousands of turbines have even greater reliability (since it is very unlikely that all turbines would be down at the same time). The system will not notice the shutdown of a 2 MW wind turbine. contrary to what some opponents of renewable energy assert. The European Wind Energy Association explains how the smaller unit size and larger geographical dispersion of wind turbines actually turns the variability of wind power into an advantage over large. [37] Analysts have already generally above 20 percent. because there are hundreds or thousands of units rather than a few large power stations. hydropower on rainy days. a November 2006 study assessing widespread use of wind power in Minnesota concluded that “wind generation does make a calculable contribution to system reliability” by decreasing the risk of large. That is. confirmed the benefit of wind power’s greater technical availability in the United States. technologically dispersed. Demand variations between individual consumers are mitigated by grid interconnection in exactly this manner. the less reserve capacity it needs.2. electrical and power systems engineers have long held the principle that the larger a system becomes.0 52/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Blackouts Solvency RPS solves blackouts by diversifying and expanding energy Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. This is because. but only if renewable energy penetration is substantial. Under a national RPS. starts drawing more electricity than the system has allocated for each consumer. the variability of renewable resources becomes easier to manage the more they are deployed. in electricity supply.

Electricity journal 21. none would ever pass muster. Indeed.5 Nowhere does Michaels refute any of these more complex arguments in favor of federal intervention. A national market for renewable energy requires a more expansive market with uniform trading rules that can only be established through federal action. Michaels assesses the efficacy of a national RPS as if it exists in a vacuum. and to help diversify the nation's electricity fuel mix. Dr. a national RPS would be designed primarily to correct market distortions (many of which are created by imposing a patchwork of inconsistent state RPS policies on an interstate electricity market).4 and eliminate inequities created by “free rider” states that enjoy artificially low electricity prices while other states pay to clean up the effects of cheap. DC. reduce uncertainty over the duration of state RPS policies.5. dirty fuels.0 53/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—A2 RPS BAD They can’t win offense—there’s only a risk a national RPS fixes the distortions by existing state RPS policies Cooper 8 (Christopher. Benjamin Sovacool and I have argued previously in this Journal that. ignoring the inconvenient truth that 25 states and Washington. to introduce some uniformity and predictability into the renewable energy market. “the most compelling argument for federal action is that a national RPS may help correct many of the market distortions brought about by a patchwork of inconsistent state actions. Like most RPS opponents.RPS AFF 1. A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?. . ScienceDirect. none of which is like the other and all of which distort the efficient functioning of an increasingly interstate electricity market. In truth. AG) If an RPS were required to be all things to all people.”3 A national RPS would diminish conflicts over RPS-eligible fuels. have adopted binding RPS policies.

June. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) $10.RPS AFF 1. Largely. • Increasing total consumer income by up to $8. and states decreasing costs and increasing healthy environments Dr. • Creating more new jobs for American workers in the same states that have lost the most manufacturing jobs • Decreasing the number of sick days workers take because of illnesses related to power plant air pollution and accidents related to the mining.0 54/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab National RPS effectively benefits consumers.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. utilities. it is hard to believe that many utilities and policymakers diligently oppose a federal RPS mandate. A National RPS Benefits U.S.2 billion by 2020 • Enhancing U. • Decreasing the cost of RECs by creating a uniform national market • Encouraging the tracking of greenhouse gas emissions reductions before the implementation of a national carbon cap-and-trade program A national RPS increases utility profits by: • Maximizing the “hedge” benefits of renewable energy investments • Decreasing construction cost overruns and encouraging more modular generation • Decreasing transportation costs associated with fossil fuel supply chains • Overcoming public opposition to new transmission infrastructure • Speeding cost recovery of transmission investments • Reducing the need for expensive reserve capacity • Creating a level playing field that rewards strategic investment.profit organization committed to reforming U. transportation and processing of fossil fuels and uranium. it is easy to find that a federal mandate could benefit ratepayers and regulated utilities in several unique ways that most policy advocates have not even considered. installation and maintenance companies and encouraging thousands of existing companies to expand into the burgeoning renewable technology manufacturing sector. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. 2007. a national non. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). Consumers A national RPS would decrease consumer electricity prices by: • Decreasing the cost of fossil fuels used to generate electricity • Decreasing the cost of natural gas used to heat and power homes • Decreasing the cost of transmission congestion • Protecting against rate hikes to recover infrastructure investments and stranded costs • Preventing predatory trade-offs that require some ratepayers to subsidize others A National RPS Benefits Regulated Utilities A national RPS decreases regulatory compliance costs by: • Reducing the need for costly litigation to clarify vague and competing state regulations • Lowering the administrative costs associated with inconsistent state standards • Making regulations more predictable to ease planning of resource investments • Creating economies of scale that decrease the cost of renewable energy technologies • Giving utilities greater flexibility in meeting RPS mandates by expanding the market of eligible renewable resources.S. When compared to conflicting state-based RPS policies and their impact on energy markets and electricity pricing. the remaining objections to federal intervention constitute a (diminishing) series of canards that Solvency—general . A properly designed national RPS is one of those rare choices.pdf) Politicians and real estate moguls are fond of referring to things as “win-win” situations. benefits that accrue to one group often come at the expense of another. rather than location A national RPS benefits American industry A national RPS would help American companies by: • Producing thousands of new manufacturing. http://www. The truth is most important policy decisions involve winners and losers. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). constituencies align like the stars and policymakers are faced with a true “win-win” situation.S.2 billion by 2020 A national RPS benefits American taxpayers A national RPS would provide secondary environmental and social benefits by: • Conserving substantial amounts of water in droughtprone areas • Decreasing the number of premature deaths and illnesses related to power plant air pollution and transportation and storage accidents • Offsetting millions of tons of greenhouse gasses that contribute to global warming • Reducing the amount of America’s wilderness than is consumed to generate electricity using fossil fuels and nuclear power Given such obvious and overwhelming advantages. repeating myths that have long since been debunked. Every so often.newenergychoices.

RPS AFF 1. overlapping. competing and sometimes irrational mess of mandates.0 DDI 2008 55/136 Strange & Serrano Lab mischaracterize a national RPS policy as an unnecessary federal intervention in a relatively free market. opponents of a national RPS wheel out these war-torn myths every time the issue is considered: . inconsistent. Forgetting that a majority of states are well on their way to imposing their own clunky.

the burdens and benefits of a national program are likely to reflect the emerging interstate nature of the U. ScienceDirect. with increased consolidation of the electricity market. a national RPS would allow renewable generators to sell their RECs to retail suppliers anywhere.2 billion kWh of electricity in TVA's service area at competitive prices. Oklahoma.3 improved reliability.56 Resources for the Future found that a 1 percent reduction in natural gas demand can reduce its price from up to 2. Price signals would flow unencumbered by the barricades erected by a state-based system. and Texas) would save the most ($13.57 In Pennsylvania. The cost of products alone could generate up to 22.62 renewable energy. where more than 90 percent of electricity comes from coal and uranium. By providing a common definition of eligible resources and establishing uniform trading rules.941 MW of incremental hydropower at existing dams.55 Indeed. A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?.6 billion as a result of lower natural gas prices and state would benefit from a national RPS because: • All regions would see lower fossil fuel prices.59 According to the National Hydro Association. A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?. • A national market more accurately values renewable generation. Electricity journal 21. AG) The consolidation of a national electricity holdings market renders as nonsense the argument that a national RPS would benefit some states at the cost of others. has consistently decreased as the technology has been deployed. ScienceDirect. NRECA has noted that state-RPS mandates are likely to raise electricity rates where renewable energy substitutes for lower-cost products.S. where a new mandate may force some forms of expensive renewable energy to replace lower-cost hydropower. The study noted that even a 1 percent reduction in fossil fuel prices would save the state $140 million per year by 2015. recent research has found commercially significant wind resources offshore in the Gulf of Mexico and the South Atlantic. Kentucky. AG) In 2005.5 percent in the long term.4 billion). biomass. an amount second only to the Northwest/Rocky Mountain region. Since a properly designed national RPS would require all load-serving entities (including publicly owned utilities. One recent incident illustrates how utilities are becoming caught in the middle of these emerging state conflicts. and electric cooperatives) – not individual states – to meet RPS mandates. Tennessee. artificial geographical restrictions. Moreover.RPS AFF 1.60 A preliminary study undertaken by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) also found approximately 900 MW of energy available in from wind.65 Such an expanded market would drive down the costs of RECs since supply would be pegged to demand organically rather than resulting from conflicting. municipal utilities. UCS found that consumers in the West South Central region (Arkansas. and incremental hydroelectric that could be “cost competitively” developed by in the Southeast. EERE forecasts cost reductions due to discounts for large-volume purchases of materials.64 • A national REC trading market means that all regions can buy credits at the same price. a study conducted by Black & Veatch determined that a statewide RPS of 10 percent by 2015 would lower both the consumption and price of coal.5. By expanding the market.63 In their analysis of federal renewable energy programs. a national RPS would increase competition so that the value of wind energy from farms in Texas can be determined by its ability to compete with coal-fired power plants in Missouri or nuclear reactors in Georgia. every billion). electricity market. parts and components as well as from the “learning effects” that flow from deploying the technology to meet greater cumulative volume levels. and Mississippi) would realize savings of up to $1.58 • All regions have renewable resources. the Union of Concerned Scientists used the NEMS model and EIA's own projections of natural gas prices to assess the economic impact of a 20 percent federal RPS by 2020.61 And a study by the University of Tennessee suggests that forest and agricultural by- • A national market creates economies of scale that reduce the cost of renewable technologies. the Southeast also has the potential to add 2. particularly wind. a federal mandate is far less likely to create inequities than requiring companies to be subject to competing regulations of any state in which they have holdings. A national RPS benefits all states Cooper 8 (Christopher. DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) projects significant continued improvements in the competitiveness of wind technology over the next decade. Several studies have documented that an increase in renewable energy production would decrease demand on tight supplies of natural gas and coal. Electricity journal 21. Regulated utilities have the option of investing in their own renewable generation or purchasing RECs from suppliers that are able to generate renewable energy for the most competitive cost. Consumers in New England would save the least (a mere $1.66 Not only would a national RPS prevent such a tradeoff. it would allow renewable energy to compete with higher-cost electricity wherever its generation is most expensive. Even in the Southeast. . where regulated utilities often claim there is a dearth of available renewable resources. as in Washington State.5. solar.0 56/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—A2 Inequity Inequities won’t occur—utilities are consolidated Cooper 8 (Christopher. Even the states of the East South Central region (Alabama. Louisiana.

cleaner air and more reliable power from renewable resources are enjoyed by all states. AG) The Bush Administration officially rejects a national RPS on the grounds that it would create inequities between states.34 Historically. under the current system of state-based RPS mandates. While RPS states pick up the tab for cleaning the air and water and diversifying the nation's electricity generation. even though as policymakers try to combat national problems using a state-by-state approach.5. Meanwhile.0 57/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—A2 Inequity Inequity is due to status quo state RPSs Cooper 8 (Christopher.RPS AFF 1. . other states enjoy artificially deflated electricity prices as they tap cheap sources of energy that pollute the environment of their neighbors. Employing a decentralized. some states are paying for the improved environmental and security situation enjoyed by all. some states have rejected their costs are borne by only the few generators who have invested in renewable energy by choice or mandate. Electricity journal 21. But the irony is that. state lawmakers can use parochial interests to perpetuate the disparity.35 As long environmental protections when they believe that such policies would raise compliance costs and encourage industries to flee to less stringent states. state-by-state approach to address pollution that does not respect state borders is remarkably challenging because upwind and upstream states do not suffer the full burdens of their pollution and may have little incentive to act. A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?. ScienceDirect.

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Solvency—A2 Increases Gov’t
Plan minimizes government interventionism Sovacool 8 (Benjamin, A Matter of Stability and Equity, Energy & Environment 19.2, IgentaConnect, AG) A federal RPS would maximize administrative efficiency. Since an RPS lets the market decide where best to deploy renewable energy technologies, it removes the need for market distortions in the form of subsidies and tax credits. For instance, subsidy levels in California, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Rhode
Island range from 0.59 to 1.95 cents per kWh for wind and hydroelectric projects and 0.11 to 0.57 for landfill gas projects. [27] In contrast,

an RPS minimizes government involvement and encourages customers to pay producers directly for RPS benefits. The selection of winning technologies and bids is left to market forces and competition, rather than government evaluation. [28]

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Solvency—2 Tiered Rps Advocate
A two-tiered RPS that creates two separate markets for production by utilities and for consumption by states pulls states in a race to the top and prevents externalization of pollutants to certain geographic areas Shoock 7 – JD Fordham Law (Corey, 12 Fordham J. Corp. & Fin. L. 1011, AG)
Renewable energy is more than simply a business. For that reason, this Note proposes an end-user-oriented, demand-side Social RPS to go along with the industry version. Fossil fuels are responsible for millions [*1072] of dollars in health care costs, 503 a host of environmental and economic catastrophes, 504 and even national security vulnerabilities. 505 The push for a renewable portfolio standard given this set of concerns necessarily requires a different mode of implementation from the business-centered standard.

The Industry RPS, its tailored execution structure notwithstanding, simply uses energy credits as a means to act on those who sell power. 506 The Social RPS makes use of renewable energy credits as well, but the relevant actors here are not utilities or independent power producers, but American states. Through the commodification of energy credits, even in a scheme that backloads implementation, power
retailers that lack renewable assets will more often than those holding such assets choose to purchase credits on the market. 507 The risk that the social costs of fossil fuel production will be increasingly concentrated in certain regions is significant. 508 Given that renewable energy sources have geographic restraints, their production and distribution hubs will initially, in all likelihood, be sited at a greater distance from end-users than their larger-market-share fossil fuel competitors. 509 [*1073] The

Industry RPS only acts on businesses, not individuals and not geographic entities. 510 While the aggregate nation-wide market share of renewables would certainly increase under this standard, its positive social benefits like lower emissions are not evenly spread out either geographically or throughout the population. 511 Therefore, the Social RPS will seek to accomplish the overall reduction of fossil fuel emissions across the board, not for the sake of the renewable energy industry, but for the sake of health of its people and environment. To do so, it will have to act on the states by mandating end-use consumption or purchase rates, rather than production or sales rates. While matters relating to the consumption of energy could constitutionally be justified as within the realm of the Commerce Clause, 512 this Note finds that the most effective way to avoid legal challenge 513 and ensure the successful reduction of fossil fuel externalities is to condition certain federal funding to the states on the timely compliance with the standard. Just as Congress conditioned a percentage of federal highway aid for each state on the raising of its drinking age to 21 during the 1980s, 514 Congress would declare that it will release funding packages for highway, education, homeland security, and all other necessary state aid only upon the certification of the required number of renewable energy credits for that fiscal year. As with the Industry RPS, the Social version will be implemented using a rate-compounding formula to ensure that state legislatures have the opportunity to weigh their own options and adjust over time. [*1074] Certainly, states could seek to carry the brunt of the purchasing and consumption requirement on themselves through mandating renewable energy use on government property. 515 A state could choose instead to regulate municipal utilities, 516 enact their own RPS if they haven't done so already, or draft incentives for renewable energy producers to move to their state. 517 In light of the disparate nature of states, their relative geographic advantages, and
populations, the Social RPS would necessarily have to be a lower standard, enacted more slowly than its commercially-oriented counterpart.

States which already have their own version of an RPS are not restricted in any way from enforcing it, as long as the state does not drop below the mandates consumption/ purchase floor set by the federal Social RPS. 518

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Solvency—20% Best
Twenty percent RPS is most cost effective—consensus proves Nogee 7 – Clean Energy Program Director with the Union of Concerned Scientists (Alan et al, The Projected Impacts of a National Renewable Portfolio Standard, Electricity Journal 20.4, ScienceDirect, AG) Using UCS assumptions for renewable energy technologies, average consumer natural gas prices would be lower than business as usual in nearly every year of the forecast under the 20 percent RPS, with an average annual reduction of 1.5 percent. In addition, average consumer electricity prices would be lower than business
as usual in every year of the forecast, with an average annual reduction of 1.8 percent. As a result, the 20 percent RPS would save consumers $49.1 billion on their electricity and natural gas bills by 2020 (Figure 1).19 All sectors of the economy would benefit, with commercial, industrial, and residential customers’ total savings reaching $19.1 billion, $17.4 billion, and $12.6 billion, respectively.

With UCS running NEMS using EIA's assumptions unmodified, the results showed that a 20 percent RPS would still reduce gas and electricity prices. Cumulative savings to electricity customers under a 20
of more than $27 billion.

percent RPS totaled $15.4 billion by 2020, with cumulative savings to gas consumers of an additional $11.6 billion, for a total savings

A 10 percent renewable standard would save less money than the 20 percent

scenario. In the UCS scenario, consumers would save almost $28.2 billion on their electricity and natural gas bills by 2020, with
the savings continuing to grow to $37.7 billion by 2025. EIA's own analysis found that the 10 percent RPS would save consumers $22.6 billion by 2025.20 National RPS scenarios using either UCS or EIA assumptions also show that energy

bills would be reduced in every region of the country, including the Southeast, where some people have suggested there is limited

low-cost renewable energy potential (Table 1). This is primarily due to the lower natural gas prices for electricity generation and other direct gas consumers that all regions would see. In addition, all regions do have some renewable energy resources, and would likely see an increase in using local resources for generation that would often displace the need for importing fossil fuel. Furthermore, the

national credit trading market created by a national RPS would allow utilities in all regions to purchase RECs for the same price, providing utilities with negotiating leverage over local renewable generators. The strong relationship between renewable energy generation, and natural gas demand and prices is further supported by a 2005 Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBL) study, which reviewed 13 analyses using different computer models and assumptions. The analyses all confirmed that renewable energy
(and energy efficiency) could reduce gas demand and put downward pressure on natural gas prices and bills by displacing gas-fired electricity generation. The report also

found that the higher the level of renewable energy penetration, the more gas is saved, and the more gas prices are reduced. Furthermore, LBL's study shows how these results are broadly consistent with economic theory, with results from other energy models, and with limited
empirical evidence.21

Pa. regulation to reduce emissions in one country can induce net abatement and emissions reduction in unregulated countries. 28 Thus. the degree of net leakage is an empirical question and depends importantly on the type of technologies developed and diffused in response to emissions limitations. 155 U.RPS AFF 1. .0 61/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—A2 Leakage The benefits of innovation and modeling outweigh the risk of pollutant leakage to unregulated areas Wiener 7 – Professor of Law. L.that is. 1961. works in the opposite direction. 27 One study of endogenous technological change estimated that. [*1971] One effect of local emissions limitations. AG) Leakage may be less severe (and prior studies may overstate its magnitude) if enough new technology is generated in the regulating country (or state) and if this technology diffuses to sources in the unregulated countries (or states). the technological innovation and diffusion effect can even outweigh the price-driven leakage effect so that net leakage from subglobal GHG regulation becomes negative . with very high price elasticities. however. Environmental Policy. Rev. and Public Policy at Duke (Jonathan.

A Matter of Stability and Equity. Georgia imports coal from Kentucky. as well as carbon dioxide emissions and air pollution. The benefits of less global warming and cleaner air are not state problems. . and Venezuela. Virginia from Kentucky and Canada. Florida from Columbia and South Africa. Surprisingly. Virginia. The southeast states lead the country in Additionally.2.RPS AFF 1. terms of electricity consumption per capita.0 62/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—RPS solves foreign fuels imports Federal RPS allows interstate commerce which solves dependence on foreign fossil fuels Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. and it is a mistake to approach them through a state-based RPS market. AG) all states currently import some of their fossil fuels. The promotion of a federal RPS would help replace such imports with a domestic supply of non-interruptible fuel. Energy & Environment 19. IgentaConnect. It would also be more equitable and democratic as it would minimize the release of toxic pollutants into these areas.

[64] And in their projections of a national RPS. landfill gas. digester gas. biomass. biomass. IgentaConnect. with the remaining majority coming from geothermal. State RPS programs have already promoted significant diversification of electrical generators. Energy & Environment 19. geothermal.2. the Tellus Institute argued that wind would fulfill only around half the national requirement. hydroelectric. the historical record seems to disprove it. A Matter of Stability and Equity. create less diversification because it would only advance large-scale wind projects. 42 billion kWh of geothermal. AG) opponents of a national RPS often argue that since a federal RPS would induce least cost compliance. this had led some to conclude that a federal RPS would While this argument makes sense. [63] In Pennsylvania. and 1 MW of photovoltaics in Montana. renewable energy technology with the lowest levelized cost tends to be wind. it is estimated that by 2015 their RPS will be met by a diverse least-cost portfolio comprised of wind. [65] Even the EIA projected in 2006 that a 20 percent clean energy standard by 2020 would likely be met by a diverse set of resources. Power retailers have installed 555 MW of wind. Since the Finally. and 6 billion kWh of solar photovo . and landfill gas projects. but rely on around 30 MW of wind in New York. most utilities would only select the least cost renewable energy technology. While the study included advanced nuclear and clean coal resources. 90 billion kWh of wind. biomass and solar resources. and photovoltaic systems to meet RPS requirements in California. it estimated that the standard would promote 118 billion kWh of biomass. 33 billion kWh of landfill gas. 3 MW of landfill gas in Illinois.RPS AFF 1.0 63/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—A2 Wind cancels out other tech Wind would not dominate the RECs—all technologies would be promoted Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. hydroelectric.

wind power. & Fin. 397 a wind energy production presence within the purview of a utility grid manager can be a boon. 402 The same is true if the utility was faced with meeting a renewable portfolio standard that mandated it sell a certain quantity of electricity derived from non-polluting sources. any government action on either the state or federal level to penalize distributors for creating pollution would make a renewable energy production facility a cost-saving asset. thereby reducing maintenance costs. L. 398 For instance. Corp. AG) Notwithstanding the fact that in certain regions wind is in fact the low-cost option. 1011. 399 Additionally.0 64/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—Wind RPS encourages wind use and saves money Shoock 7 – JD Fordham Law (Corey. excess capacity costs are limited. 403 . 12 Fordham J.RPS AFF 1. since wind power can be added incrementally. 400 The inherent [*1058] disadvantage of the remoteness of wind facilities can actually be turned into an infrastructural benefit as electricity generation outposts situated throughout the grid can reduce the risks of voltage concentration and overload in the production areas. 401 Furthermore. like all renewables. can help offset the risks of supply shortages in fossil fuels.

Solvency—A2 market solves wind . In markets that will be characterized by short-term energy sales and price volatility.awea. given the importance of achieving a more diverse. and economic benefits of renewable energy resources are ones that accrue to the public at large.investors will have very short investment horizons.absent the long-term contracts that have supported virtually all existing renewable energy projects.html) [S. not directly to the purchasing consumer. regional. Public Goods: The price stability. Transactions Costs: Under retail competition.0 65/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab The market can’t solve without RPS American Wind Energy Association October 1997 (http://www. The risk of such a possibility is too great to take. economically and environmentally sound electricity supply. long-term renewable energy policy. This "free rider" phenomenon can be expected to deter consumers from volunteering to pay a little more for renewables since their purchase will benefit other. Without a strong. The combination of the following market barriers will serve as powerful hindrances to renewables: Externalities: Fossil fuel generators pollute the air but do not have to pay for the local. and global damage caused by their emissions. Financing for capitalintensive renewable energy projects will be expensive and difficult to obtain.RPS AFF 1. while a "green market" of some size may develop. but which will be very rare in competitive markets -. will receive no credit for the damages they prevent. there will be high transactions costs associated with reaching consumers who are willing to pay for the public benefits of renewables.S. investors will prefer low-capital-cost technologies with short payback times. could decline from current levels. environmental.org/policy/rpsbrief. it is likely to be far smaller than what is required to significantly diversify the nation's electricity supply and than what might be expected given the strong public support that renewables enjoy. it is quite possible that the amount of renewable energy serving the U. noncontributing consumers as much as it will them. even if they produce more cost-effective power over their lifetimes. rather than increase as it should. Thus. Page] Even "perfectly competitive" markets have inherent imperfections that are well-established in economic theory. in unregulated markets. Renewable energy does not pollute but. the market reality will be that -. In addition.

and looked not at technical potential but effective load carrying capability. The study found that such an RPS would result in $10.2. unlike fossil fuels. IgentaConnect. a preliminary study undertaken by TVA found approximately 900 MW equivalent energy from wind. Energy & Environment 19. a study undertaken by the University of Tennessee found that the TVA region featured extensive incremental hydroelectric. Furthermore. [58] This has provoked TVA. A Matter of Stability and Equity. including $2. along with many other utilities. [62] . southeastern utility that uses mostly coal and nuclear power-were to meet a 10 percent RPS by 2020. and waste gas potential. However. For instance. AG) Opponents often make the argument that a federal RPS would hurt utilities that continue to rely predominately on coal.RPS AFF 1. further lowering prices. a 2005 UCS study concluded that all regions would benefit from a national RPS.1 billion more output. and achieving economies of scale that would reduce the cost of RECs nationwide. The study noted that even just a 1 percent reduction in fossil fuel prices would lead to a $140 million reduction in fossil fuel expenditures for the state. biomass. or roughly half of the estimated RPS cost premium in 2015. The study also noted that all regions would see lower natural gas prices for electricity and direct gas consumers. To meet this obligation. biomass. and that. as well as serving to depress fossil fuel prices and consumption. agricultural residues. [61] Similarly.000 more jobs. the study suggested that a national credit trading market means that all regions can buy RECs for the same price. giving larger utilities negotiating power over local generators. and incremental hydroelectric facilities that could be “cost competitively” developed. that forest residues. natural gas. [59] Furthermore.0 66/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—A2 Winning & Losing Regions All regions benefit from RPS Sovacool 8 (Benjamin.7 billion kWh from renewable resources.3 billion) in the West South Central (including states such as Texas and Arkansas) but would still save $1. and would put them at a competitive disadvantage to other power providers.6 billion in the South Central (including states such as Tennessee and Alabama). the study found that consumers would save the most ($13. It also concluded that TVA possessed a significant number of landfills and wastewater treatment plants where methane could be easily captured to produce electricity. a large. where more than 90 percent of electricity comes from coal and nuclear resources. [60] In Pennsylvania. and energy crops alone could provide 22. for instance. if the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). to argue that a federal RPS would force them to raise costs and rates. The study suggested. or uranium to generate electricity. solar. a study conducted by Black & Veatch concluded that a 10 percent state-wide RPS by 2015 would have virtually no negative consequences for consumers. it would need to produce 19. all regions have extensive renewable resources. TVA would have to expand their Green Power Switch program fully 250 times its current size by 2020. The study differed from earlier assessments in two ways: it compared the least cost of electricity to the retail price of electricity. Assessing a 20 by 20 federal RPS using these concepts and dividing the country into ten regions.8 billion in earnings and 85. which reflects the match between output and peak electricity demand.2 billion kWh of electricity.

energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. a national non.0 67/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—At: RPS causes winners/losers RPS prevents “winners and losers” by evening out the playing field with RECs Dr. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). under the current system of state mandates. 2007. A national mandate would level the playing field by creating consistent.pdf) Myth #1: A national RPS would create “winners and losers” Truth: All states have renewable resources they can affordably develop.newenergychoices.S.profit organization committed to reforming U. http://www. Other RPS states are victims to inconsistencies between state mandates that produce perverse predatory trade-offs and require them to export their cheap in-state renewable electricity to other states in exchange for more expensive electricity or renewable energy credits. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).RPS AFF 1. June. polluting electricity in non-RPS states.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. . some RPS states are “losers” by subsidizing the cheap. However. uniform rules and by allowing utilities to purchase RECs or develop renewable resources anywhere they are cost competitive.

pdf) Helps Achieve Cleaner Air: Adopting a national RPS of 20 percent by 2020 can help reduce emissions of harmful air pollutants and of carbon dioxide (a leading greenhouse gas). Studies from Michigan. http://www. North Carolina. and nuclear power Dr. Wind power offsets other.org/legislative/pdf/Federal_RPS_Factsheet.RPS AFF 1. 2007. the Department f Energy determined that “the imposition of a national RPS would lead to lower generation from natural gas and coal facilities. 15% from coal. more polluting sources of energy. gas. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). and 10% from electricity imports.” 2007.0 68/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Solvency—solves gas/oil need National RPS would displace coal. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS).” Analysts have confirmed this trade-off in RPS states like Michigan. June. Virginia. fuel at other power plants is not consumed. A UCS study found that a 20 percent RPS would reduce carbon dioxide CO2 emissions by 434 million metric tons per year by 2020 – a reduction of 15% below “business-as-usual levels”.5 .profit organization committed to reforming U.newenergychoices.awea. and Texas. a national non. http://www.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. 65% of the energy it displaced would come from natural gas.S. equivalent to taking nearly 71 million cars off the road. National RPS would reduce CO2 emissions and ensure clean air American Wind Energy Association (“Federal RPS Factsheet. When wind power projects generate electricity.300 MW) of the state’s peak electricity demand.S.4 A recent New York study found that if wind energy supplied only 10% (3. That is important because electricity generation is the largest industrial source of air pollution in the U. and Oregon found that renewable generation displaces new nuclear reactors and decreases the mining of uranium. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris.pdf) A national RPS would displace coal and natural gas. 10% from oil. • Renewable energy offsets nuclear power. New York. In a 2002 assessment of a 10% national RPS.

RPS AFF 1. significant renewable installations have occurred in states without RPS programs. They track bulk non-hydro renewable energy capacity installations.4. so renewable capacity built in a non-RPS state may be used to meet another state's mandate.0 69/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—A2 States solve now Doubt statistics that underpin their state RPS solvency—they confuse correlation with causation Wiser 7 (Ryan et al. without confirmation that any given facility was constructed because of a state RPS or was. even eligible for a given state's RPS. In fact. Further complicating the estimation is that some states allow out-of-state generation to count toward their RPS requirements. The Electricity Journal 20. AG) These estimates should be viewed with some caution. . Elsevier. in fact. The Experience with Renewable Portfolio Standards in the United States. April.

there remains a high political hurdle for statelevel actions: because ghgs mix globally and have global impacts. because it omits emissions limits on the world's largest sources . 20 Only international cooperation on emissions limitations can effectively reduce ambient concentrations. by conserving energy or protecting forests. why regulation of carbon dioxide under the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) and State Implementation Plans (sips) of Clean Air Act sections 109 and 110 would likely fail if carbon dioxide were listed as a "pollutant" by the EPA under section 108 of the Clean Air Act. Country A might undertake some abatement. AG) Even if these legal hurdles can be surmounted. First. and a capital relocation effect. This in turn suggests that local actions will often be difficult to enact. subglobal regulatory coverage fails to control important sources of pollutants. because the sources of ghgs are globally widespread. or favor a state patchwork to motivate industry support for a federal (or global) regime. Third. and industry segments (such as alternative energy sources) seeking to raise their rivals' costs. Environmental Policy. there remains the normative question . because that ambient level is determined by the worldwide concentration of ghgs in the atmosphere. a "slack off" effect. ghgs mix globally in the atmosphere and have global impacts. Subglobal action (and. The problem is not whether carbon dioxide [*1967] qualifies as a pollutant. 1961. it raises the likelihood of market power being exercised by large players in the smaller allowance trading market. 155 U. and could even be perverse. When the Kyoto Protocol was negotiated in 1997. in every country and every sector of the economy. Unregulated producers in Country B will respond by increasing their production of these emissions-intensive goods. Emissions abatement in Country A would reduce the demand for fossil fuels in Country A. The price effect [*1968] operates in the short term.environmentalists seeking to protect the climate. as well as Australia. The result is underinvestment in abatement. or perceive real costs but favor moving first in order to learn by doing. 21 Subsequent studies have moved that date ever closer . a fortiori. the price of emissions-intensive goods produced within Country A will rise and the quantity will decrease. Each state (or country) has an incentive to free ride on other states' (or countries') actions. both for domestic consumption and for export to Country A. lowering the world market price for such fuels and thereby increasing the quantity demanded in Country B (a country not regulating its emissions). No matter where they are emitted. 17 Indeed.so much so that China is now forecast to surpass the United States in carbon dioxide emissions by 2009. but that state-based ambient standards are a mismatch with a globally mixing GHG. though challenges still await in California and in RGGI). inducing an increase in the quantity of timber harvested in Country B. Brazil. and others. In the absence of a treaty. without any relocation of industry. Subnational state-level actions will have a small impact on the global picture. because local decisions to relax regulations would reduce costs without incurring the local pollution harms associated with conventional pollutants.e. The political coalitions in each state that help secure the enactment of GHG limitations may reflect the combination of ambitious leaders with so-called "Baptists and bootleggers" 18 coalitions . restricting forest clearing in Country A would restrict timber supply and raise the world market price for timber. on its own. Consider action by only one country to limit GHG emissions. and the challenge is to produce this global public good via the consent of heterogeneous national actors. Even the Kyoto Protocol is not sufficiently global.0 70/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—Race to Bottom Devolved action causes a race to the bottom due to externalities and the global nature of pollutants—leakage to unregulated areas makes pollution worse Wiener 7 – Professor of Law. just to the point where its (small) domestic share of the global marginal benefits equals its domestic marginal costs of abatement. withdrawal from the Kyoto Protocol. fourth. it suffers from cross-border "leakage" of emissions: subglobal regulatory coverage encourages source activities to shift or "leak" to unregulated areas over time. incidentally. The magnitude of these effects depends on the price elasticities of the emissions-intensive activities (i. subnational action) to reduce ghgs has several disadvantages. a "race to the bottom" is even more likely in the case of a globally mixing pollutant with no local impacts. 22 The net effect of the Kyoto Protocol on global emissions and concentrations may thus be quite modest.the United States and China. The benefits of emissions abatement are therefore shared globally. Yet in fact we do see state-level actions being undertaken in the Northeast and in California. or are governors or other high officials with broader political ambitions. perhaps most important.S. Rev. even ubiquitous. But if Country A begins to abate its own emissions more aggressively. or favor emissions [*1966] reductions regardless of the costs. Country B would do likewise. enjoying the global benefits without bearing the local costs. Second. India. Such action may look worthwhile to those who think the costs are low.whether these state-level actions are desirable. This shows. and Public Policy at Duke (Jonathan. and the marginal benefit to Country B of its own abatement efforts would be . Similarly. local abatement actions pose local costs. how much the activity levels change in response to price changes) and on the degree of integration of world markets for the relevant goods and services.. Climate protection is a global public good. some additional global protection would be obtained. unless cooperation can be organized.contributes a small share of global GHG emissions. Each state of the United States even California . And. Certainly. 19 II. yet deliver essentially no local climate benefits. No SIP could. as well as action by the European Union despite U. no state could effectively control its own ambient level of carbon dioxide or other ghgs. or perceive real costs but favor action that would impose higher costs on other states or industries (raising rivals' costs). attain a serious NAAQS for ghgs without international cooperation. it forfeits the greater cost savings obtainable in a larger allowance trading market encompassing more countries. L.RPS AFF 1. The "slack off" effect is a response to changing national net benefits. Normative Disadvantages of State-Level Actions But even if these legal and political obstacles can be overcome (and it seems that they are being overcome to some degree. Pa. Leakage results from the movement of three levers: a price effect. developing countries were forecast to surpass industrialized countries in carbon dioxide emissions by about 2030. Prices also affect trade in emissions-intensive products: as Country A restricts its emissions.

First. Finally. states of the United States are likely to [*1969] be even more vulnerable to leakage than are many countries in the international arena. For example. states.0 DDI 2008 71/136 Strange & Serrano Lab diminished slightly (on the standard assumption of diminishing marginal benefits of protection).S. This type of leakage may not be as serious a concern for countries with their own delimited national electricity systems. for U. The extent of this relocation effect depends on the openness to trade and investment flows of the world economy. Hence. restrictions on emissions in Country A could induce emissions-intensive industries to uproot and relocate facilities to unregulated Country B in order to produce their products at lower cost and export their products to world markets (including back to the regulated country). The same analysis applies a fortiori to action by a single state of the United States.S. Second. individual states are more fully integrated into the open trade of the national American market (as well as international markets) than are some countries. so that the domestically rational degree of abatement in Country B would fall. other states rationally emit more. Indeed. states' efforts to restrict or tax emissions-intensive imports from other states than those imposed by GATT/WTO trade disciplines on countries' efforts to do the same internationally. the Dormant Commerce Clause may place more stringent restrictions on U. a major concern is that electricity supply would shift immediately and seamlessly from regulated in-state sources to unregulated out-of-state sources connected to the same shared electrical transmission grid. I have illustrated these examples using hypothetical Countries A and B. . and on the marginal cost of the emissions constraint relative to the marginal cost of relocating.RPS AFF 1. in the longer term. as some states emit less.

RPS AFF 1. Environment 49.12 In addition. 102 legislative proposals dealing with climate change have been introduced from 1997 to 2004. that considerable state action in both cases has arisen not because of some judgment that statebased action is optimal or preferable but rather because of the perceived policy vacuum at the federal level. an interstate compact.and across countries . there must be the latitude for a federal law. therefore. Fed won’t model states Sovacool 7 (Benjamin and Jack Barkenbus. AG) proliferation of different GHG policies and allowance markets in different states . Ebsco. Pa.may generate conflicting approaches and vested interests that are difficult to reconcile and mesh in a larger national or international regime.6. 155 U. 1961. Rev. Differences across state policies may impede collaborative linking among states (such as RGGI or a group of western states). Environmental Policy. .0 72/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—A2 State Model States aren’t modeled Wiener 7 – Professor of Law. AG) In the last 10 years—from 1997 to 2006—federal bills promoting RPS were introduced in Congress 17 times. So whatever states do. or a treaty to revamp the Second. we may learn from the states' experiments that it is better not to adopt some policies. Ultimately.13 All have been beaten back by Republican-dominated Congresses. and the expectation among parties that this may well occur. which the states would like to arrange in order to reduce leakage and expand their trading market. It is safe to say. L. Necessary but Insufficient. and Public Policy at Duke (Jonathan. the flip side of experimentation is that a system. of course.

and nothing except solar thermal and photovoltaics count in Arizona. and whether cost caps. Iowa. further hampering efforts to deploy renewable energy technologies.500 MW must come from solar by 2008 and 2020. Maine. RPS reflect more a political compromise needed to get them passed wavering political support can all doom an RPS to certain failure. [6] Pennsylvania and Connecticut exempt some suppliers—such as publicly owned utilities or large utilities that offer default service—from their RPS requirements. and in Iowa. Rhode Island 16 percent by 2020. Connecticut. [12] The differing state RPS targets and expiration dates of state policies can confuse investors. Others were tossed to politically weak environmental and renewables lobbies to dress up larger financial benefits bestowed on utilities. and Texas base their purchase requirements on installed capacity. who are then not able to obtain long term sales contracts. [15] Abrupt changes in renewable energy policy has deterred investors. Energy & Environment 19. where electricity must be delivered. vague. unclear regulatory rules. Because Washington’s RPS statute excludes hydropower as a “renewable energy” but other state RPS mandates include it. and the duration of the standards in Arizona and Maine are unclear and may expire. Rhode Island. Maine sets an upper limit of 100 megawatts (MW) while other states limit eligible resources to between 5 and 20 MW. RPS were watered down by opposing political interests. This inconsistency gives rise to a scenario in which Arizona’s geothermal generation is exported to neighboring states. California and Colorado have a REC system under development. [9] Massachusetts. “experience in several U. IgentaConnect. [8] As if this was not enough complexity.5 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) for every month a provider fails to comply. Connecticut 5. and noncompliance penalties exist create additional transaction costs that must be borne by investors The state-by-state approach to RPS artificially inflates the cost of renewable energy by forcing some utilities to rely on sub-optimal in-state resources and induce development of renewable energy generators where they may not be most cost effective. wind and biomass to meet the state’s mandate or accept non-attainment of the RPS goal. a prerequisite for any national renewable energy trading market. led companies into bankruptcy. the country needs federal action to harmonize inconsistent state definitions concerning eligible resources. respectively. how large it has to be. small hydroelectric does not count in New Jersey. purchase requirements. and The confusion caused by differing state RPS requirements suggests that policymakers did not explicitly deliberate or agree upon their goals. For instance. methane does not count in Maine. solar thermal does not count in Iowa. only new systems in operation after 1997 meet the standard. RPS compliance in California and New Mexico is at the discretion of the public utility commission. or unspecified. and Hawaii’s energy efficiency practices. and obligations. and to send a clear signal to investors that they can invest in . it does not matter. creating confusion among investors and utilities that must operate in multiple states at once. while Nevada and New Mexico include it. while Washington consumers are forced to buy higher-cost renewable energy from generators outside the state. [11] Arizona’s RPS mandate excludes geothermal power and utilities. whereas Hawaii. while Arizona’s regulated utilities must either purchase more expensive solar. and Montana and New York offer REC trading only as long as electricity is delivered directly to the state. and the cumulative result is a situation liable to court challenge and litigation.RPS AFF 1.5 cents per kWh. in Texas it is 1999. Furthermore. State inconsistency has engendered a situation where different interpretations create very different outcomes. when it has to come online. Nevada. In other cases. [16] Federal harmonization is needed to standardize varying state definitions of renewable energy. Colorado sets a cost cap that electricity costs cannot increase more than 50 cents per month in a customer’s bill. New Jersey. Wisconsin set a 2. DC 11 percent by 2022.2 percent standard by 2011. Consider the situation in Washington and Arizona. Maine and Rhode Island trade credits under the New England Power Pool. current renewable energy policymakers are forced to expend resources grappling with inconsistent or vague terminology. and Texas has a non-compliance penalty equal to $50 per megawatt hour (MWh) (with annual adjustment for inflation) or 200 percent the average market value of credits for the compliance period. and Washington. Some state standards were hastily drafted provisions that formed part of political battles over electric utility industry restructuring.0 73/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—uniformity Unifomity among states is impossible due to varying interpretations—this makes interstate cooperation impossible and turns away investors Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. [7] Iowa. Washington’s low-cost hydropower is sold to ratepayers in neighboring states. Pennsylvania’s coal gasification and distributed generation. [14] Regardless. New Jersey’s standard features a carve-out that mandates at least 90 MW and 1. As Ole Langniss and Ryan Wiser put it.2. [10] Inconsistencies over what counts as renewable energy. complicated compliance measures. and Maryland divide eligible resources into separate tiers and offer credit multipliers for different technologies. overly broad renewable energy eligibility guidelines.”[13] instead of an optimal policy mechanism to promote renewable energy. Why does such disparity exist? In most states. insufficient enforcement. states . In Massachusetts. Each state defines “renewable” resources differently. Delaware 10 percent by 2019. Connecticut. A Matter of Stability and Equity. Minnesota.” Arizona and Hawaii offer no REC trading systems. Maine’s standard includes fuel cells and high efficiency cogeneration.S. Delaware 2. AG) Perhaps most important. and made interstate cooperation virtually impossible. whereas other states base theirs on electricity sales. Photovoltaic (solar) panels do not count in Minnesota. ultimately increasing costs for implementing agencies and stakeholders. and New Mexico have RPS where compliance is voluntary. shows that inadequate purchase obligations. Minnesota.. New York 25 percent by 2013. yet New Mexico and Nevada have no “safety valve.. and Pennsylvania levy compliance fees on power marketers and utilities not meeting state RPS requirements by charging them $45-55/MWh. trading.

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However. D.5. But in Rhode Island. In just the Northeast. A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?. its convoluted rules hamper REC trading outside of its geographically defined service area. While acknowledging that the price volatility of RECs under existing state programs makes them useless for collateralizing debt. further distorting the REC trading market. Electricity journal 21. ambiguities The legal morass generated by state-based RPS strategies also can discourage renewable energy investments by creating risky and unpredictable markets. challenged the legality of Iowa's RPS mandate on the grounds that it obligated the utility to purchase power from renewable energy facilities at rates in excess of the avoided cost set by the federal Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA). NYISO (New York). company invested roughly 10 percent of its entire portfolio in 568 MW of new wind energy. the electricity wholesale market is controlled by three independent system different. generators are allowed to bank their RECs for up to two years after the year of generation. MidAmerican Energy Company. In Maryland and Pennsylvania.24 In many states. ScienceDirect.21 In New Mexico. Michaels asserts simply that “there is no clear reason why a federal program would be the volatile prices of state-based RECs results almost entirely from the different compliance levels and enforcement regimes adopted by the 25 states with binding RPS policies. C.22 A particularly ugly legal battle arose from one utility's claim that Iowa's RPS mandate was inconsistent with existing federal statute.400 MW of renewable capacity throughout the nation until the situation in Iowa was resolved. New York. Upon settlement of the dispute. for example. In Instigating litigation In many states.0 75/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—uniformity Unifornity established under a federal RPS encourages investment Cooper 8 (Christopher. but generators in PJM cannot.27 New Jersey. for example. possibly decades. AG) Only tangentially does Michaels address the significant benefits that would result from creating uniform rules for trading renewable energy credits (RECs) in a national market. for example. PacifiCorp held back on investments in nearly 1. the within the statutes and unclear expiration targets have created confusion among regulated utilities. GIS also requires that generators operate in control areas that are directly adjacent to ISO-NE. Fifth sin: Creating uncertainty The complexity of state-based RPS statutes is compounded by uncertainty over the duration of many state RPS programs. Contributing to the complexity. Generators in NYISO. Connecticut further restricts REC trading to generators actually within ISO-NE. In August 2005.23 MidAmerican and the state of Iowa spent 15 years and countless dollars locked in a heated legal battle before the issue was settled in 1999 (in favor of the utility). Massachusetts. and DC) impose an additional requirement that the electricity from renewable generators outside of PJM be imported into the territory in order for external generators to freely trade RECs within their states.26 E. State-by-state differences and restrictions have splintered the national renewable energy market into regional and state markets with conflicting rules on the treatment and value of RECs. Similarly. for instance. Multiple studies published in this very Journal explain how the fluctuating prices of state RECs send unclear price signals to renewable energy investors about the attractiveness of development activity. are allowed to trade RECs in the GATS market.RPS AFF 1. While GATS will help facilitate a robust REC trading market between PJM members. Third sin: Hampering interstate trade Contradictory and imprecise definitions of “renewable energy” in state RPS mandates make deciding what qualifies as a “renewable energy credit” exceedingly difficult. In 1984.7 An efficient market for renewable energy (and RECs) requires a more expansive market with some uniform trading rules that can only be established through federal action. regardless of the individual state RPS policies. but must qualify for one of the RPS policies of a PJM member state and must be physically located adjacent to PJM geographical boundaries. While MidAmerican was busy fighting Iowa's RPS statute in court. a vague definition of “renewable resources” precipitated legal battles over whether hydroelectric facilities were included in the standard or not. risking uncertainties in renewable energy investments in the Pacific Northwest for years. will review and potentially modify their RPS schemes in 2008.25 Similar delays in renewable energy investments will occur with the continued emphasis on a state-bystate approach to RPS. Indeed. to complicate matters even more. and Rhode Island. GIS sets stringent limits on who can trade within the ISO-NE region. resulting in protracted and expensive lawsuits. generators may only bank up to 30 percent of their compliance total (and then only if the banked RECs are in excess of the compliance total in the year of generation).6 The lack of a real national market for RECs creates an absence of liquidity and limits renewable energy investment capital. Stakeholders trying to plan investments in state renewable energy markets are tormented with unknowns. Generators external to PJM.” This statement appears counterintuitive on its face. since operators – ISO-NE (New England). the largest investor-owned utility in the state. ISO-NE has its own REC trading market supported by the Generation Information System (GIS). Fourth sin: ambiguities within the statutes and unclear expiration targets have created confusion among regulated utilities. ambiguity over whether the state's RPS applied to existing or new renewable energy technologies prompted a lawsuit from El Paso Electric that went all the way to the New Mexico Supreme Court.20 PJM member states also differ conspicuously in their treatment of RECs from generators within the service area. some PJM member states (Delaware. it was not installing new renewable capacity. . can trade RECs in Massachusetts. MidAmerican has signaled that it is prepared to litigate against new RPS statutes in Oregon and Washington. that restriction may expire in 2010. The state-by-state approach to RPS is also creating unanticipated difficulties to the expansion of distributed generation technologies. however. Maryland. but. and PJM (13 mid-Atlantic states). PJM launched its Generation Attribute Tracking System (GATS) to monitor RECs between PJM member-states.

Ten years ago. New Mexico.0 76/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab 2009.30 It is not hyperbole to suggest. and 2010. respectively. . Hawaii's standard expressly allows for its requirements to be waived if they prove to be “too costly” for retail electric providers and consumers.RPS AFF 1. and Maine may terminate their RPS programs entirely.29 When policy stability is assured. therefore.28 Arizona. long-term project financing follows. researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory estimated that these uncertainties may increase the costs of renewable energy projects up to 50 percent compared with the probable costs under stable regulatory environments. But potential investors are less likely to assume risks where legislative or regulatory commitments are weak or constantly changing. that the instability inherent in a state-based approach to RPS is dramatically distorting private investments in renewable energy generation nationally.

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States—Free Riding
Federal actions solves free-riding by some states Sovacool 8 (Benjamin, A Matter of Stability and Equity, Energy & Environment 19.2, IgentaConnect, AG) the current system of state RPS is riddled with leakages. A solitary state’s effort to deploy more renewable energy technologies and improve the environment through the market may result in benefits to other states that have not paid for them. As long as adjacent or regional states support renewable power, residents nearby receive the benefit at no cost. Economically rational state politicians therefore prefer to “free-ride” and instead spend money on measures guaranteed to bring benefits to constituents.[18] The current patchwork of state based RPS thus provides an incentive for the numbers of states that have not passed RPS to free ride on those that have. Only a national RPS evens the playing field and brings the benefits of renewable energy to all states.
Analogously,

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States—Legal
Legal uncertainty surrounding interstate trade kills investment, even if they win its legal Cooper 8 (Christopher, A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?, Electricity Journal 21.5,
ScienceDirect, AG)

retail electricity market represents the essence of interstate commerce: Electricity involves a national marketplace that reaches every American and cannot be carved into neatly defined or clearly distinct markets and regulatory jurisdictions. It is perhaps the clearest case of unfettered Commerce Clause jurisdiction extant today.36 Yet, state RPS mandates remain at perpetual risk from constitutional legal challenges. In many ways, the tension of state RPS policies regulating an interstate electricity market is founded on a legal house of cards that could collapse at any time. Article 1, section 8 of the Constitution grants Congress the power “to
Joel B. Eisen doesn’t mince words in declaring his belief that the

regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with Indian tribes.” In the many years since ratification of

the U.S. Supreme Court and other lower courts have consistently repealed state legislation that may hinder or prohibit interstate trade.37 States are permitted to promote instate business, but they are not permitted to protect those businesses from out-of-state competition. The courts have ruled that this “dormant Commerce Clause” means that a state cannot “needlessly obstruct
the Constitution,

interstate trade or attempt to place itself in a position of economic isolation.”38 The smooth functioning of the national market requires the federal government to prevent states from adopting protectionist or autarkic policies that would attribute a product's market share to its geographic origins rather to market mechanisms. State RPS statutes that set geographic restrictions on renewable generation or otherwise limit the interstate trade of RECs may be accused of violating this central tenet of the U.S. Constitution. Not

utilities have demonstrated a natural proclivity for successfully challenging state regulations on Commerce Clause grounds.39 In 1982, New England Power Company successfully
surprisingly, regulated utilities to consume a certain percentage of Oklahoma-mined coal.40

invalidated a New Hampshire statute prohibiting a hydroelectric company from exporting electricity out of the state without the utility's approval. In 1992, utilities in Wyoming convinced the Supreme Court to overturn an Oklahoma statute requiring the state's

But the Supreme Court's 2002 decision upholding the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's jurisdiction over the transmission component of retail sales may be the starkest signal yet that regulated utilities can call upon the federal government to intervene when they feel unfairly compromised by state regulations.41 Indeed, Eisen argues that the practical implication of the Court's decision in New York v. FERC is that, “the federal government could assert jurisdiction all the way to the consumer's toaster if it so chose.” Thus, it is only a matter of time before utilities and lawmakers challenge the constitutionality of certain state RPS mandates.42 Nevada, New Jersey, and Texas have all adopted restrictions that only count in-state renewable resources toward their respective RPS mandates. Similarly, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and the District of Columbia stipulate that RPS-eligible renewable resources must come from within PJM's territory.43 Some states have gone so far as to devalue RECs from other states. California's RPS, for example, requires RECs to be bundled with the electricity generated from renewable resources (which has the practical effect of restricting unbundled RECs from other states).44 Even the California Public Utilities Commission has warned state
policymakers that their position on out-of-state RECs may be constitutionally questionable.45 While the legality of these restrictions has yet to be challenged on Commerce Clause grounds, Eisen warns that state

and federal regulators are starting to

engage in a kind of “Commerce Clause brinksmanship.”46 As recently as 2006, Constellation Energy threatened one successful challenge would be enough to risk a cascade of copy-cat litigation as regulated entities piggyback on judicial precedent. In any event, the result is a risky and unpredictable regulatory environment threatening the longevity of state-based RPS mandates and the longterm stability of the nation's renewable energy market.
could try to craft an RPS that would pass Constitutional muster or appeal to a higher court,

to sue Maryland's Public Utility Commission on Commerce Clause grounds for rejecting its merger with Baltimore Gas and Electric.47 If a state RPS were found to violate the Commerce Clause, the practical effect would be its immediate repeal. While state legislatures

Counterplan’s legally unfeasible Wiener 7 – Professor of Law, Environmental Policy, and Public Policy at Duke (Jonathan, 155 U. Pa. L. Rev. 1961, AG)

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Strange & Serrano Lab Meanwhile, state regulation of GHG emissions may face a variety of legal obstacles, including challenges (i) under the Dormant Commerce Clause, especially if states attempt to regulate or tax emissions embedded in products (such as goods, services, and electricity) imported into the state from other states; (ii) under the Dormant Treaty Clause or more generally for interference with the foreign affairs power of the federal government, especially where U.S. states purport to enter into agreements with foreign countries such as Great Britain or the European Union; 15 (iii) under theories of preemption by federal statutes such as the Clean Air Act; and (iv) under the Interstate Compacts Clause, in the cases of RGGI, western states, or other cooperative multistate programs. 16

California’s RPS. Environment 49. AG) Finally. is attributable solely to the workings of that market and not the product’s geographic origins. While no one has yet challenged the legality of these restrictions. AG) Along these lines. Supreme Court consistently strikes down state legislation that attempts to tax or prohibit interstate trade. DoE consultant on the Climate Change Technology Program (Benjamin. Government and International Affairs Professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute. Necessary but Insufficient. but they are not permitted to protect those businesses from out of state competition. Oklahoma that requiring use of indigenous fuel resources for in-state electricity production violated the Dormant Commerce Clause.S. [21] In each of these instances.S. States are permitted to promote in state business. Yet in New Energy Co. Envtl. This suggests that. trade or attempt to ‘place itself in a position of economic isolation. AG) Only federal action would avoid constitutional challenges relating to the dormant commerce clause. 397. and Texas set in-state restrictions for those renewable resources counting toward their RPS. The “Dormant Commerce Clause” limits state powers that impede interstate trade. Merrill notes that state environmental policymakers have been reluctant to pursue meaningful regulation of transboundary or interstate pollution. Two potential conflicts exist between state RPS policies and the dormant commerce clause: geographic restrictions on eligible renewable resources and the different ways states assign value to RECs. the Court defined this to mean that a state cannot “needlessly obstruct interstate The smooth functioning of the national market requires the federal government to prevent states from adopting protectionist or autarkic policies that would attribute a product’s market share to its geographic origins rather than to market mechanisms. Illinois. A Matter of Stability and Equity. 27 Stan. The Commerce Clause in the U. section 8 of the U. the U. DoE consultant on the Climate Change Technology Program (Benjamin.” [20] The rule is believed to be necessary for the smooth functioning of the national market.’”24 requires RECs to be bundled (thus disallowing unbundled RECs from other states). for example. and Texas have all adopted restrictions that only count in-state renewable resources toward their respective RPS mandates. and with Indian tribes. Supreme Court has consistently used the converse of this part of the commerce clause (hence its description as the “dormant commerce clause”) to strike down state legislation that it has determined might hinder or prohibit interstate trade. while no state RPS has yet been challenged in court. the door certainly remains open.6. Constitution grants Congress the power “to regulate commerce with foreign nations. The Dormant Commerce Clause means Two potential areas of conflict between state-based RPS and the Dormant Commerce Clause concern geographic restrictions on eligible renewable resources and how states assign value to RECs . of Indiana v. that a state cannot “needlessly obstruct interstate trade or attempt to place itself in a position of economic isolation.S. New Jersey. For example.0 80/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—Legal State RPS would be struck down under the Commerce Clause because they can’t regulate interstate trade or electricity trasmision Sovacool 8 – Research Fellow in the Energy Governance Program at National University of Singapore. The U. several legal precedents suggest that a legal case against these restrictions could prevail. and among the several states. IgentaConnect.RPS AFF 1. states often disagree on questions of attribution and whether a source state is legally [*420] responsible for pollution emanating from its facilities. New Jersey. The Best of Both Worlds.”23 In the many years since ratification of the Constitution. Wyoming v. Article 1. constitution grants affirmative powers to Congress to regulate a variety of areas. Limbach the Supreme Court ruled that an income tax credit limited to in state ethanol producers was unconstitutional. Government and International Affairs Professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute. States can’t do RECs intrastate Sovacool 7 (Benjamin and Jack Barkenbus. and in Alliance for Clean Coal vs. Illinois. Thomas W. Miller a federal court ruled that an Illinois preference for the use of the court established that the balance between a state’s taxing power and the Commerce Clause should be resolved in favor of unrestricted state-to-state trade. Energy & Environment 19. Ebsco.S. 97 Merrill has identified six factors complicating state efforts to address such "spillover" pollution. state-based renewable portfolio standards risk challenges on legal grounds. L. June. Some states that have implemented their own RPS mandates have adopted policies that devalue RECs from other states. and is intended to ensure that a product’s market share Nevada. In 1986. First.2.25 States fail at regulating intrastate pollution Sovacool 8 – Research Fellow in the Energy Governance Program at National University of Singapore. states disagree on questions of . Illinois coal to satisfy Clean Air Act amendments was illegal. Second.J. Nevada.

pollution is reciprocal. Most states will therefore ignore such problems completely rather than risk admitting liability once discussions about interstate pollution commence. or on what standards of proof are appropriate to establish that their pollution injured another state. Fourth.0 DDI 2008 81/136 Strange & Serrano Lab causation. Third. even when these first three factors are agreed upon. most states have a litigate-or-settle mentality. or on whether or not the source state causing injury has acted unreasonably or negligently. . especially losses in the form of attorney fees and costs. and are therefore reluctant to engage in lawsuits given uncertain outcomes and expenses. that is. Fifth. they differ on questions of standard care and liability.RPS AFF 1. And sixth. all states involved in negotiations are usually responsible for pollution going somewhere. most states will disagree over an appropriate remedy or course of action. Instead. few cases of pure or unidirectional transboundary pollution exist.

Iowa. June. Washington. Constitution.S. One successful Commerce Clause challenge risks a cascade of copy-cat litigation. .0 82/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—Legal State RPS might be destroyed because of court battles Dr. Growing tension between state and federal utility regulators has engendered a kind of “Commerce Clause brinksmanship. • State RPS laws are vulnerable to Constitutional challenge. Pennsylvania and Texas have all adopted restrictions on out-of-state renewable energy that many scholars agree violate the Commerce Clause of the U.profit organization committed to reforming U. • The Supreme Court has already given FERC the authority to intervene.” • A successful federal lawsuit could destroy state RPS programs.newenergychoices. 2007.S. Massachusetts and New Mexico. FERC is that “the federal government could assert jurisdiction all the way to the consumer’s toaster if it so chose. Nevada.pdf) A National RPS Avoids Costly Court Battles • Ambiguous state mandates invite law suits. • A Constitutional challenge is inevitable.” that invites interstate utilities to challenge the constitutionality of state RPS mandates. California. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). New legal battles could be waged in Oregon and Washington. collapsing the entire state-based RPS structure and destroying the emerging interstate renewable energy market. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. New Jersey. The practical affect of the Supreme Court’s 2002 decision in New York v. Utilities have gone to court over vague state RPS laws in Connecticut. Maryland.RPS AFF 1. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). DC. a national non. http://www.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.

federal law has provided only limited regulation of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide. recent legislative debates have constraints. Emory (William. 82 N.0 83/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—Industry <3 Industry is begging for a federal policy—too many lawsuits with the states Buzbee 7 – law prof. proposed legislation to regulate greenhouse gases that contribute to global climate change received a boost when several industry leaders indicated they might welcome such a federal law.. We need a national approach to greenhouse gases.. 72 The apparent industry change of heart reflects a desire to "avert the multiplicity of regulations being drafted by various state governments." 73 According to the President of Shell Oil. "We cannot deal with 50 different policies . the federal domain. .U. and agencies have been reluctant to use existing statutory powers to promulgate regulatory 71 An array of states and cities have started to regulate greenhouse gases.Y.RPS AFF 1. 1547. explored whether regulation of motor vehicle greenhouse gas emissions should fall under the states' authority or exclusively within 75 . AG) Of perhaps the greatest national and international importance. and common law [*1570] suits have been filed as well.L." 74 Relatedly. Until now. Rev.

475 The credits would be tradable between industry actors as a parallel "commodity" to the electricity itself. Electric Light & Power.RPS AFF 1. 12 Fordham J. Energy & Environment 19. 482 Another advantage is that unlike direct government subsidies. AG) The prospect of states and localities implementing their own independent REC trading programs also raises the question of whether and how states can maintain regulatory control over environmental quality when it is embodies that authority in an object of commerce. [22] It remains to be seen whether such a standard would stand up to scrutiny under the Dormant Commerce only the federal government has the constitutional authority to regulate wholesale electric power and interstate commerce (in the form of RECs). 487 To ensure long-term growth of the renewable energy industry. 1011. absent Congress passing the equivalent of the . Thus. States that lose control over quality of their credits may erect barriers and devalue credits from other states. 471 given year is 10%. for example.0 84/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—ferc key FERC is key—state-level action encourages states to turn towards protectionism— regulation under the FERC allows smooth interstate commerce Sovacool 8 – Research Fellow in the Energy Governance Program at National University of Singapore. the market value of credits will ultimately determine when the standard "self-sunsets. rates and the transmission of electric power on a national scale. AG) Congress. and developed integrated resource plans for utilities. would have to pass an enabling statute that allows an agency (likely the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) to certify and administer "renewable energy credits. once Congress exercises its right to regulate an aspect of interstate commerce. 480 In this way. While the states have historically set prices for retail electricity sales. requires RECS to be bundled (thus disallowing unbundled RECS from other states). instead signify that renewable energy has been supported in the amount of one kilowatt hour per credit. A Matter of Stability and Equity. Federal action here can be especially important given that more aggressive state mandates for renewable energy have already been challenged in court for violating PURPA. [23] While the states have a significant history and authority as regulators of electric utilities. 484 The overseeing agency would merely be required to certify the annual ownership of the credits themselves. approved the permitting of electric generators. after setting a production standard. a non-utility-owned wind farm (a power generator as opposed to a power retailer) 478 in North Dakota that produces and sells only renewable energy would have 90% of that year's credits to sell on the open market to power producers and distributors in any other part of the country that do not sell enough on their own. As stated. that aspect of interstate trade ceases to be dormant. This Act gives The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) exclusive authority over the sale of electric power at wholesale Clause. AG) If past is prologue. 477 Thus. which requires that utilities only have to purchase power from qualifying facilities at “avoided costs. and adjudicate disputes over credit transactions. The AWEA also notes that in an energy credit-based RPS scheme. [24] Ferc must be certified for REC administration Shoock 7 – JD Fordham Law (Corey. 483 Furthermore. the RPS will have accomplished its goal for at least the year. only the federal government has the power to regulate commerce between the states.2.com/display_article/302308/34/ARTCL/none/none/1/A-Federal-MandateRequires-Federal-Action/. 473 If the RPS for a The Industry RPS must be managed as a federal regulatory scheme. L. and for each power generator and distributor. each power retailer must have renewable source energy account for 10% of their total kilowatt hour sales for the year. http://uaelp. it is effective in both regulated and competitive wholesale energy markets. & Fin. IgentaConnect. administer penalties for non-compliance. the RPS will have to start high enough. Indeed.pennnet. making the RPS effectively self-enforcing." 486 Once a credit becomes worthless. most regional expansion proposals likely will be threatened by parochial interests and complicated funding arrangements. Government and International Affairs Professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute. only the federal government has the power to regulate the national wholesale power market under the Federal Power Act of 1935. 485 The formula for setting fine rates would be set statutorily along with the RPS to avoid costly and time-consuming bureaucratic rule-making procedures. and the market price would depend on how ambitious the annual increase in the RPS would be. Rustum. while not per se indicative of sales. 481 Industry actors that fail to meet the standard would be subjected to steep fines that substantially outpace the fair market value of the energy credit. FERC determined that state efforts to force utilities to deploy more renewable energy projects violated federal law. regulated the environmental effects of electricity sales. the RPS determines how many credits they must hold at the end of each fiscal year. California’s RPS. no public funding is necessary. 476 The credits. 474 The credits are proof of these sales. accelerate fast enough. A Federal Mandate Requires Federal Action.” In California. Corp. DoE consultant on the Climate Change Technology Program (Benjamin. over a long enough period of time to set off the diminishing rate of return for the credits. every power retailer (like a utility) would have to determine whether it would be more expensive [*1068] to produce their own renewable energy or directly subsidize the production of it elsewhere. 488 FERC is key to enforce interstate tradability Eisenstat 7 – head of the energy practice with Dickstein Shapiro LLP (Larry and Michael J." 472 These credits represent one kilowatt hour of electricity each. 479 Credits would not be allowed to be carried over from year to year.

maximum renewable penetration will very likely require not only federal transmission siting authority but authorizing the FERC to consolidate control areas in order to take full advantage of the geographic diversity of renewable energy resources. chance of meeting the existing state RPS objectives. let alone new federal targets.RPS AFF 1. this time to further the expansion of the transmission grid. if any. . Yet. it will be left to FERC and the states to promote such infrastructure projects as are necessary for utilities to meet a federal RPS. there is little.0 85/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab National Interstate and Defense Highways Act of 1956. There must be a federal mandate to the effect that federal and state government set and enforce national goals. Otherwise. Business as usual clearly won’t cut it. Put simply. neither has the authority nor the resources to mandate a nationwide coordinated approach to processing new siting applications or requests for interconnection and transmission at the state and federal levels. The consequences could be very severe given that even the most aggressive RPS proposed appears to fall well short of what ultimately will be required to meet greenhouse gas emission reduction targets.

.0 86/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—PTC Link Plan replaces PTC.RPS AFF 1. The federal proposals have also tended to assume a replacement of the federal Production Tax Credit (PTC) with a national RPS.S. AG) Significantly. the federal programs would all allow tradability of recs within the entire U.4. whereas most state policies contain significant state-wide or regional limitations on REC sources. April. The Experience with Renewable Portfolio Standards in the United States.. The Electricity Journal 20. Elsevier. whereas state programs will operate with or without the federal PTC. whereas state programs do not Wiser 7 (Ryan et al.

it is much more effective and efficient to have one centralized RPS program instead of dozens of separate. AG) A national RPS consequently avoids direct funding by multiple state agencies that can become administratively burdensome. [29] Moreover. time consuming.2. creating a continuous incentive for utilities to seek cost reductions in the price of their renewable systems. Under a federal RPS. Energy & Environment 19. Such competition is lacking with current state mandates that dispense one time monetary awards to individual renewable generators. A Matter of Stability and Equity. and inefficient. IgentaConnect.0 87/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—Inefficient ** Action by fifty states creates huge inefficiencies --. [30] . inconsistent state programs.RPS AFF 1.multijurisdictional overlap Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. renewable energy projects must continually compete to ensure an adequate volume of power and credits.

non-hydro renewables would continue to provide a relatively modest contribution to U.7% of total projected nationwide electricity generation in 2025. however. http://eetd. AG) eventual market impacts of existing state RPS policies are uncertain. electricity supply: adding the estimate of new renewable generation required by existing state RPS programs from 2000 to 2025 to the 1999 base amount of non-hydro renewables sums to just 6% of total projected electricity generation in the U. compared to a non-hydro share of 2. has published over two hundred journal articles and research reports (Ryan and Galen Barbose.gov/ea/ems/reports/lbnl-154e. Renewables Portfolio Standards in the United States.4% Roughly 15% of the projected growth in retail electricity sales from 2000 though 2025 would come from new renewable generation required under existing state RPS policies.pdf .RPS AFF 1.S. by 2025.S.lbl. energy generation required under these policies is significant. Even with this growth. and will depend critically on design and implementation details. there is little doubt that the aggregate amount of new renewable Though the in 2006.1% in 1999 and 2. The estimated 60 GW of new renewables capacity equates to an additional 4. April. a well-known expert on RPS who regularly advises and consults with state and federal agencies in the design and evaluation of renewable energy policies.0 88/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—Not Enough States even if they meet target won’t generate enough renewables Wiser 8 – Electricity Markets and Policy Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. an advisor to the Energy Foundation's China Sustainable Energy Program and the Corporate Advisory Board of Mineral Acquisition Partners. .

or customers in utility service territories with a rate freeze. for example. exemptions for small utilities. . large customers. http://eetd. April. Force majeure clauses and cost caps.RPS AFF 1. Many states have exempted certain LSEs or end-use customers from meeting RPS reqiurements (see Table 2). state RPS policies also differ in terms of which entities are obligated under the program.0 89/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—POUs States exemptions of municipalities weakens uniformity Wiser 8 – Electricity Markets and Policy Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. or instead allow POUs to develop their own renewable energy standards. which are common. can also effectively function as exemptions by reducing the amount of load subject to RPS obligations. an advisor to the Energy Foundation's China Sustainable Energy Program and the Corporate Advisory Board of Mineral Acquisition Partners. In particular. Renewables Portfolio Standards in the United States.lbl. states often exempt some or all POUs from formal RPS obligations. Various other types of permanent or temporary exemptions have also been adopted.gov/ea/ems/reports/lbnl-154e.pdf . AG) As alluded to earlier. has published over two hundred journal articles and research reports (Ryan and Galen Barbose. a well-known expert on RPS who regularly advises and consults with state and federal agencies in the design and evaluation of renewable energy policies.

21 The electricity utility industry is also transitioning away from a state-by-state energy market. inclusion of existing versus new technologies. The Energy Policy Act of 2005 removed the geographic restrictions that limited public utility holding companies to single. Minnesota and Iowa have voluntary standards with no penalties. Environment 49.6. but it makes little sense now. Connecticut.RPS AFF 1. Connecticut. and many have begun to merge and consolidate to maximize profits and deal with the perceived challenges of restructuring. inconsistencies between states—over what counts as renewable energy.20 The result is a renewable energy market that deters investment. complexity. Implementing agencies and stakeholders must grapple with inconsistent state RPS goals. complicates compliance. Contrary to enabling a well-lubricated national renewable energy market. Massachusetts set its target at 4 percent by 2011.” while the standard in Pennsylvania includes coal gasification and small-scale fossil fuel power plants. investors. and the specifics of credit trading have been decided differently in every state. and how it may be traded—clog the renewable energy market like coffee grounds in a drain. while Rhode Island chose 15 percent by 2020. Using individual states as a crucible for innovations in electricity generation and marketing may have made sense when limits were placed on the size and geographic scope of utility holding companies. fuel cells and high efficiency cogeneration units count as “renewables.22 More utilities operate across state lines. Iowa. . whereas Massachusetts. and Pennsylvania all levy different noncompliance fees. how large it has to be. and Texas set their purchase requirements based on installed capacity. discourages interstate cooperation. and Rhode Island trade renewable energy credits (RECs) under the New England Power Pool. Minnesota. AG) Important issues such as geographic scope. Consequently. and encourages tedious and expensive litigation. Maine. Vermont. Necessary but Insufficient. eligible technologies or industries. when it has to come online. Rhode Island. whereas Texas has its own REC trading system. In Maine.0 90/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—Uniformity key Industry’s desire to expand regionally is hampered by a lack of uniform standards Sovacool 7 (Benjamin and Jack Barkenbus. and businesses. the resulting state-based market may create confusion. where it must be delivered. New Hampshire. and investors must interpret competing and often arbitrary statutes. and inconsistency for policymakers. making a state-by-state RPS approach anachronistic. Ebsco.19 To pick just a few prominent examples. whereas other states set them relative to electricity sales. integrated systems.

the rest of all of the states with mandatory 2010 greenhouse gas reduction targets all rank relatively low in terms of their emissions. Environment 49. has repeatedly attempted to build coal-fired power plants For example.S. by 2030. stateby. Necessary but Insufficient. and discourage the adoption of alternative fuels for vehicles and renewable energy technologies. AG) In addition.1 billion metric tons (equating to a 62 percent increase from 1990 levels with an average increase of 1. utilities operating in a region that includes those states with mandatory emissions regulations and those without has an extra incentive to build new power plants only in those without. As a result. even the most aggressive climate statutes (aimed at cutting emissions by 2010) will make only a negligible contribution to offsetting greenhouse gas emissions. .38 percent reduction compared to The other 36 states do not just offset these gains. PacifiCorp. stateby. total energyrelated carbon dioxide emissions will equal approximately 8. states acting on climate change depress the cost of fossil fuels and other carbon-intense commodities by lowering demand for them and thus their price. Finally.state reductions “are nowhere near the magnitude of reductions needed to bring the U. state standards reduce the regional (and even global) price for carbon-intense fuels. according to EIA. Yet those states that have committed to achieving timebounded.6. Yet reduced prices encourage overconsumption in areas without carbon caps.32 The state-bystate patchwork of climate change policies. Localized climate action also sends distorted price signals.”35 EIA’s reference case. decrease the incentive to enact energy efficiency and conservation measures. By lowering demand for carbon-intense products. the overall growth rate still increases at 1.33 Put another way. they provide further incentives for nearby states without climate regulation to do nothing because of lowered prices. allows stakeholders to manipulate the existing market to their advantage. But in doing so. their policies would result in a reduction of approximately just 460 million metric tons of carbon dioxide by 2020—a 6. in other words. in Wyoming and Utah—states without mandatory greenhouse gas reduction targets— but not in Oregon (which has mandated a stabilization of greenhouse gas emissions by 2010) or Washington (which has mandated 1990 levels by 2020).34 Even if all states with mandatory 2010 climate plans attained their targets.0 91/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—Free Riders State action encourages free riders that exploit the least regulated states—even the best case scenario can’t meet necessary targets Sovacool 7 (Benjamin and Jack Barkenbus.06 percent every year.2 percent per year). quantitative reduction targets for greenhouse gas emissions accounted for only around 20 percent of nationwide emissions in 2001.state action on climate change is prone to what is known as the “free rider” phenomenon. With the exception of New York and New Jersey (which rank ninth and seventeenth among states in greenhouse gas emissions). as mentioned above. into compliance with the Kyoto Protocol’s call for reductions of 5 percent below 1990 levels from 2008 to 2012—much less the reductions needed to avert dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. According to EIA.RPS AFF 1. a utility serving customers in the Pacific Northwest. Ebsco.

Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). this tangle of state-based RPS programs discourages long-term investments and.profit organization committed to reforming U.0 92/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab States—Inefficient State control kills coordination Ryan Wiser (scientist in the Electricity Markets and Policy Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. National RPS avoids inconsistencies and inefficiencies related with State RPS’s Dr. RPS designs vary substantially from one another.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. but that involves ratepayer collection of funds and incentive payments from a state energy authority. while ratepayers in RPS states pick up the tab for cleaning the air and water and diversifying the nation’s electricity generation.gov/ea/emp/reports/62569. and Illinois as one without such a policy: we readily acknowledge that such classifications are subject to debate. 2007. • A national RPS prevents utilities from profiting off of inconsistencies Because Washington’s RPS excludes hydropower. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. for example. that there is some debate over what exactly constitutes an RPS.S. so much so. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. Washington consumers are subsidizing cheaper renewable energy for surrounding states. • All states have renewable resources The Southeast has the potential to add 2.pdf) While most state efforts have been laudable. while Washington ratepayers are forced to buy higher-cost renewable energy credits from generators outside the state.pdf [Ishita]) Though the concept appears simple and direct in theory. biomass.” April 2007. http://www. often conflicting mandates that distort the market for renewable energy technologies and unintentionally inflate electricity prices.RPS AFF 1.profit organization committed to reforming U. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). National RPS avoids inconsistencies and inefficiencies related with State RPS’s Dr.pdf) A National RPS Creates a Level Playing Field for States • Uniform rules avoid “free riders” Some states enjoy artificially deflated electricity prices from cheap. By subjecting an increasingly interstate electric utility market to confusing and sometimes contradictory state regulations. solar and incremental hydropower just in TVA’s service territory. June.newenergychoices. for example. “Renewable Portfolio Standards: A Factual Introduction to Experience from the United States. dirty sources of energy. state RPS statutes have created a patchwork of inconsistent. The Tennessee Valley Authority has documented nearly 900 MW of “cost competitive” renewable energy from wind. in some cases. and whether certain states qualify as having an RPS. has established voluntary renewable energy targets.newenergychoices. http://www. 2007. Above we have identified New York as a state with an RPS.lbl. In effect. a national non. Washington’s lowcost renewable energy is sold to consumers in neighboring states. in practice. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). encourages utilities to exploit the inconsistencies.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. And researchers . Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). a national non. A national RPS prevents these kinds of predatory trade-offs by creating a uniform definition of eligible renewable fuels. New York has established a policy that it calls an RPS. PhD in energy and resources. June.941 MW of electricity from additions to existing hydroelectric facilities. http://eetd. Illinois.S.

0 DDI 2008 93/136 Strange & Serrano Lab at the University of Georgia have found commercially significant wind resources off the coast of Georgia and South Carolina. An expanded REC market generates more investment capital for renewable technologies by guaranteeing a more stable and predictable rate of return. • Federal REC trading rules create a uniform price for renewable energy credits (RECs) A national REC trading market would allow generators to sell their RECs at a uniform price to retail suppliers anywhere in the nation. • A national RPS allows utilities to develop resources anywhere A national renewable energy market allows regulated utilities to invest in renewable resources wherever their development is most cost competitive.RPS AFF 1. .

27 Hawaii’s standard contained so much “wiggle room” that it was unclear even to its own advocates whether it applied to most of the state’s utilities.26 In Connecticut. lamented how “for multi-state utilities. June. a national non. they are forced to decipher vague and often contradictory state statutes. These exemptions created uncertainty over whether the statute would be enforced against any utilities at all. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). building and acquiring generating capacity on a multi-state basis confusing and contradictory. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS).profit organization committed to reforming U.” States—Inefficient .S. 29 In testimony before the U. Don Furman.S.pdf) Amid this complex morass of regulations. for example. stakeholders and investors must not only grapple with inconsistencies. a series of inconsistent requirements and regulatory frameworks will make planning.28 Such ambiguity has lead to “wide disagreements among parties in regulatory proceedings” about how to enforce some state RPS mandates. 2007. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris.RPS AFF 1. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.newenergychoices. the state’s Department of Public Utility Control originally exempted two of the state’s largest utilities from RPS obligations because the description of “electric suppliers” in the statute was unclear. a senior VP at PacifiCorp.0 94/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Ambiguous State RPS prevents new investments and noncompliance Dr.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. http://www.

A Matter of Stability and Equity. and ten companies. as a “selfsunset” would take place once the market value of renewable energy credits has stabilized at or near zero.2. [31] Similar credit trading schemes are becoming more popular and palatable among businesses. including Alcoa. have externalities that do not honor political boundaries. such limitations do not match the delivery of power. IgentaConnect. and generators. and would require tracking all renewable energy transactions within an entire trading region.0 95/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 REC PIC REC is key—everything fails without it Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. . [32] Absent RECs. Utilities can rely on credits to reduce risks. Energy & Environment 19. such as electricity flow. The efficacy of geographic restrictions is uncertain because key facets of RPS policy. [33] Moreover. Caterpillar. since most states share electricity infrastructure. signifying that renewables have successfully entered the market. Another advantage of particular importance to intermittent technologies such as wind and solar is that credits can be sold at any time. RECs would also ensure that a federal RPS would not need any formal expiration. an enormously complicated task. avoiding artificial winners and losers. verifying compliance would be next to impossible. They also provide considerable flexibility to utilities. Utilities located in areas with poor renewable resources are not “punished” because they have the ability to invest in energy generation in resource-rich areas. Four-fifths of utility executives polled in 2007 expected mandatory emissions caps within a decade.RPS AFF 1. recently called on Congress to set up a cap and trade system for greenhouse gases. regardless of when power was generated. economic development. AG) A federal RPS must also establish a national REC trading scheme that does not set geographic restrictions or limitations on renewable generators. retailers. Tradable credits are needed to function as a simple accounting system to prevent cheating and ensure compliance. and technological development. pollution reduction. and DuPont. since credits can be purchased to make up any shortfall or take care of any excess. and cannot ensure that all of the renewable electricity they use will be generated indigenously.

it is difficult to integrate RPS requirements into a carbon cap-and-trade program in a way that produces relatively fair results with respect to the entities that purchase the renewables and.0 96/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Cap and Trade RPS is better than cap and trade due to existing state RPS interaction capability Cabral 7 – lawyer specializing in climate change (Neal. First. In order to properly sort out these issues and develop a coordinated and sound national carbon policy that includes a renewables component. Taken together. as imposed through an RPS. L. & Pol'y 13. legislators must evaluate and agree on the specific purposes for enacting an RPS program in the context of an expected carbon cap-and-trade program. particularly in the earlier stages of any carbon cap-and-trade program where the required reductions are expected to be relatively modest. therefore. . Second. once a carbon cap-andtrade program is enacted. They must also structure both programs to meet the defined objectives of the RPS. AG) Three primary bases for tension exist between an RPS and a cap-and-trade program. bear their costs. 8 Sustainable Dev. the purpose of an RPS program becomes more uncertain because renewable power purchased pursuant to an RPS program will no longer provide any additional carbon reductions beyond those required by the cap. renewables. are typically not the least-cost compliant solution to carbon reductions.RPS AFF 1. these three tensions between an RPS program and a least-cost carbon cap-and-trade policy tend to weaken the current standard rationales for enacting RPS programs. Third.

And it gives utilities and generation companies an incentive to improve their competitive position in the market. only three years earlier.08% at 2022. the standard ensures that the renewable energy market will result in competition. all electricity retailers must have enough renewable energy credits to satisfy 3. the growth rate would be 0.).G.R. the growth rate accelerates 50% to 0. In 2012. 499 kicks in at whatever percentage the statute sets as its ultimate goal for renewable market infiltration.18% in 2022. For instance. A gradual standard would also reduce credit prices and credit volatility. At this point. in turn lowering costs. The following year the 0. but the A.G.02%. a mandate.95%-0. the end game of the Industry RPS begins. monitoring. goal as the future value. and the rate of the annual increase.023%.98% (rounding to the nearest hundredth). The other RPS structure that avoids the abrupt increases of the 2003 congressional proposal is one that mirrors any interest rate compounded annually. 18. roughly the same The sun-setting of the RPS.G. for example. or arbitrarily set a final standard number. & Fin.2.G.G.015%. 500 If. 2010 with a base-line [*1070] renewable market share of 3. It creates relative certainty and stability in the renewables market by enabling long term contracts and financing for the renewable power industry. Energy & Environment 19. Once the acceleration ends and Congress finalizes the standard. 2010.01%. 1011. By 2015 the RPS is 4. the A. since developers would realize they could recover their investments over a reasonable period of time. so that by December 31.R. formula backloads the standard and assures the market that a sufficient quantity of renewable energy credits will be available in the beginning to achieve total industry compliance. 2015 and 2016 at 80%. 25% were the figure Congress had chosen. 20 percent by 2020. Corp. enact a more limited growth formula. [39] Gradual RPS key to market compliance Shoock 7 – JD Fordham Law (Corey.G.G. 13. 501 Using the initial market share as the principle (present value). AG) Accelerated Growth Rate ("A. so that they have an interest in driving down the cost of innovation that will deliver renewable energy at the lowest possible cost. the initial rate increase is 100% for the first two years with lowering rate increases by a factor of 10% every two years (2013 and 2014 at 90% growth increase. The difference between the implementation schemes is one of strategy and simplicity. and 25 percent by 2025. etc.16% by December 31. IgentaConnect. 2022 would be the end date.R. the acceleration would cease after 2025.R.01% base in 2010.15%. scenarios.G.95% in utility consumption. For illustration's sake. By 2025. In the staggered acceleration growth rate formula. a 50% constant A. efficiency and A gradual phase-in provides time to set up standards for credit certification. 17 percent by 2018. registering RPSs of 8. long-term RPS standard the 50% scheme reached. 14 percent by 2015.01% growth rate will increase by a factor of 50% to 0.R. The simplest derivation is a constant A. in the 50% constant A. 9 percent by 2012.will begin at 0.68% RPS. formula [*1071] scenario. making the RPS 4.5% increase over the EIA's projections. the 2015 RPS would be 4. A more complex accelerated growth rate formula can be used to speed up or than projected.R. A Matter of Stability and Equity. 10. AG) A national RPS system must be gradual and set specific benchmarks such as 6 percent by 2009.R. permutations. the period over which the compounding runs. like 50% is the simplest method of implementing the standard with an eye for incremental progress while providing industry participants the chance to adapt over time to the new market.R.49%.93%. still only a 4.96% RPS. increasing to 25. renewables to reduce their RPS compliance costs.R.R formulae allow for a broad-based and conservative phase-in over at least the first seven years of the RPS with . if in using the same 3.R. 23 percent by 2023. L. slow down the desired achievement of RPS milestones.a nearly 520% higher market share Setting a constant A.G. potentially exposing under-prepared retailers to heavy non-compliance penalties.33% in 2023.RPS AFF 1. designed to be a function of the market.R. wherein the The factor by which the annual growth rate is multiplied stays the same throughout the life of the RPS. and compliance. the acceleration begins to show results. and compounds that growth rate until the desired market share is reached. 12 Fordham J.G.G. the market share compounded interest approach provides a considerably faster start than the A.G. RPS could begin January 1.08% in 2021. At that point Congress could either elect to maintain that 25% as its final RPS. 497 The alterable variable the annual growth rate . The compounding interest formula is more parsimonious. 2025 .") formula begins with the projected market share for renewables on a stipulated date. but one that surpasses the expected 2020 market share by more than 69%. By 2020. 2011 the RPS would sit at 3. approach and one year before the 50% constant A. meaning that by December 31. identifies an easy-to-meet initial target.06% in 2024. The drawback to this approach is that it does not provide the same slow start as the A.0 97/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Gradual PIC Gradual key to reduce volatility Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. including a 7.28% RPS in 2015 . and 25. what began as a fast start for the interest compounding formula comes in at nearly 25% three years after the staggered A. formulae mentioned above.between 60% and 70% higher than either of the two demonstrated A. By increasing the amount of renewable energy slowly over time. 498 By starting small and compounding the RPS's annual rate of increase. leading to a seemingly modest 6..

RPS AFF 1. however. represents an improvement over the arbitrarily-rounded legislative targets of the 2003 proposal. Either structural method.0 DDI 2008 98/136 Strange & Serrano Lab an option to ramp up the acceleration once the "getting-to-know-you" period is over. 502 .

RPS AFF 1. it could first pursue aggressive energy efficiency and demandside management strategies to lower sales and reduce the total amount of renewable generation needed to comply with the standard. For instance. utility had to meet 20 percent of its electricity sales with eligible renewable resources and worried that it could not affordably generate enough renewable electricity or purchase enough credits. A mandate based on sales rather than installed capacity ensures that suppliers are concerned more with the actual delivery of electricity than the construction of renewable energy systems that may never produce a watt of energy actually sent to consumers. A demand-based RPS is an elegant way of including energy conservation in the mandate while adding a level of flexibility in meeting RPS targets. the total compliance level of the RPS. Energy & Environment 19. therefore. Setting the RPS as a function of electricity demand also provides utilities with an incentive to pursue cost effective demand-side management and energy efficiency strategies as a way of reducing electricity demand and. AG) a national RPS should require utilities to meet a percentage of electricity sales through renewable resources.2. IgentaConnect. . if a Rather than mandate a fixed amount of renewable capacity.0 99/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Demand PIC RPS should be based on demand not capacity Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. A Matter of Stability and Equity.

0 100/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Don’t Spec Sources CP Specifying qualifying sources is vital to solvency Cory 7 (Karlynn and Blair Swezey. therefore. impacts on market prices and investor confidence. Ultimately. low cost thresholds. to be successful. While mid-course policy corrections may be warranted. municipal solid waste. RPS policies must have consistent and enforceable rules. Renewable Portfolio Standards in the States: Balancing Goals and Rules. states face some unique challenges with system output verification because of the potentially large number of small systems and because most systems are located “behind the meter” at customers’ sites. which in some cases may run afoul of federal interstate commerce laws. geothermal. and weak (or no) enforcement penalties. It is still too early to judge the effectiveness of solar set-asides. including Ultimately. Rather than unduly restricting access to potentially less costly out-of-state resources. Most state RPS laws and regulations agree on the inclusion of wind and solar energy resources as well as methane sources derived from landfill gas and anaerobic digestion of some biomaterials. States also have adopted different rules around the eligible life of a REC and REC banking. and fuel cells. vague resource and technology eligibility definitions. different state REC definitions will need to be harmonized to allow for broader trade between states and REC tracking systems. All of these factors can make the RPS policy less predictable and compromise success. states can provide incentives to encourage in-state generation projects and renewable energy industries. However. Factors that increase market uncertainty include compliance waivers. AG) However. . Pressure remains for states to realize the economic development benefits of their RPS policies. solar set-asides are likely to be most successful where they are combined with significant incentives and strong enforcement mechanisms. Solar technologies have been the primary beneficiaries of resource set-asides in RPS policies. which has implications for many facets of RPS implementation. Encouraging market certainty and ensuring clarity in RPS regulations are critical to policy success. any changes should take full account of the potential noncompliance penalties.RPS AFF 1.4. RECs’ eligibility criteria are not uniform across all states. little actual experience has been documented. Electricity journal 20. ScienceDirect. Eligibility is less uniform for hydropower. However. as these provisions are just starting to operate.

A Matter of Stability and Equity. Gradual benchmarks ensure that new renewable generation is developed without having to distinguish between “existing” and “new” renewable energy systems. falling water.RPS AFF 1. The construction of new hydroelectric facilities and incremental improvements to existing ones could help utilities to use renewable resources to provide base-load power.” as with the feud over New Source Review under the Clean Air Act.2. Energy & Environment 19. Such sources would neither diversify energy resources nor achieve the economic benefits of a vibrant renewable energy sector. For instance. A fuelbased definition does not rely on policymakers to determine the forms of technology that should receive market preference and does not require policymakers to continuously revise the mandate to include new technology that may be developed. AG) A national RPS should include all renewable resources and discriminate against none. A fuel-based definition of eligible resources would include large hydroelectric facilities.0 101/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Resource PICS—Fuel Based Definition Best A fuel based definition of eligibility is best Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. By including both new and existing generators as eligible resources. IgentaConnect. . there are strong market-based reasons that they should not be directly included in an RPS. While alternative technologies such as non-renewable distributed generation. Including incremental hydropower also allows areas like the Southeast and the Pacific Northwest to benefit from their regions’ substantial sources of existing clean energy. wind. and/or natural geothermal sources. The definition of eligible renewable resources could be based on the renewable aspects of the fuels used rather than any particular technologies deployed. Renewables should compete with other renewables. clean coal with carbon capture and storage. eligible resources could be defined as: Any electrical generator that creates electricity from sunlight. a fuel-based definition of eligible resources would ensure that truly renewable resources attain a greater proportion of the nation’s electricity fuel portfolio. Avoiding this debate reduces administrative complexity and frees generators from continuously monitoring regulatory rulings to determine whether a particular expenditure will be considered maintenance and refurbishment of an existing facility or a new investment that qualifies toward the RPS mandate. renewable plant or animal material. Finally. a national RPS would avoid bitter debates concerning whether certain “upgrades” to existing systems make them “new. just as clean coal should compete with dirty coal and light water reactors with advanced nuclear generators. and energy efficiency could be encouraged.

“In the right places. President Bush addressed the Washington International Renewable Energy Conference yesterday. And nuclear power only accounts for about 20 percent of the nation’s electricity production.0 102/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Resource PICS—Diverse portfolio Renewable energy is key to the world economy – maintaining a diverse portfolio is key to over all success of renewable development Lane 08 (Terry. some of which are already under stress. But just like a strong investment portfolio includes a diverse group of stocks and bonds. But the wind doesn’t blow consistently.. R-Wis. solar power is a great resource. ranking Republican on the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming. As Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne noted at the conference yesterday. and use of renewables in the U. But this shoe doesn’t fit every footprint. renewable energy won’t produce as much electricity as nuclear power currently does. renewable energy and nuclear power. “This week. wind farms can harm bird populations. and will remain.gov/apps/list/press/gw31_republican/pr_03_06_2008. wind energy is a promising source of clean. And I am pleased that the chairman has scheduled this hearing today on renewable energy technology. Rep. “So placing wind farms in places that will harm bird populations does not advance the cause of renewable energy. made the following statement during today’s hearing titled. But even then. Secretary Kempthorne said. not to mention the scores of other government and business leaders who are here to examine the future of worldwide renewable energy production. The Audubon Society has noted that the average population of common birds has declined 70 percent since 1967.RPS AFF 1. . “The Energy Information Administration recently reported to the Senate its projections for future energy production. “Blowing in the Wind: Renewable Energy as the Answer to an Economy Adrift:”“As I’ve said many times. “For example. http://www. “The reason everyone is talking about renewable energy production is because of its future role as a vital part of the world’s economy. but mostly in areas where large tracks of land are available for use and the sun shines consistently. safe and produces no greenhouse gases. wind farms will be a great source of renewable energy. These should be just two options in a diverse energy portfolio. “On that point.house. Nuclear power is clean. a key source of worldwide energy production. different energy technologies work better in different places. and I agree. I’m happy that the chairman has also scheduled a hearing for next week on nuclear energy technology. people came to Washington from all over the world to talk about renewable energy. and some areas are better for wind power than others. including fossil fuels. renewable power. Press Room. News Advisory. Traditional fossil fuels are. future energy portfolios should include a diverse array of energy technologies. Each has benefits and drawbacks. Jim Sensenbrenner. That is why maintaining diverse energy resources is a top priority.S. will nearly double by 2030. “But diversity is the key. It too must be part of a diverse energy portfolio. “Likewise.S. US House of Rep Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming. When it comes to energy security or environmental protection. promoting and advancing technology must be a key part of any global warming or energy security policy.html) U.

reducing greenhouse emissions. particularly since the fossil fuels that power it will eventually dry up completely. 160 permanent jobs. The SES Solar Two project is expected to generate 700 construction jobs.html) Investing in solar power increases our world's energy independence and energy security.” http://www.85.RPS AFF 1. specialist in Solar Energy Generation technology.000 SunCatcher dishes generating 300 megawatts.0 103/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Resource PICS—Solar Energy (1/2) No link – their evidence doesn’t assume our specific solar power SES Solar Two that’s key to diversity. and millions of dollars in wages and taxes. Each SunCatcher dish is 38 feet tall. Ultimately. but new transmission infrastructure is critical to achieving full realization of the Solar Two facility.htm) .stirlingenergy.000 solar dishes. Moreover.net/b/docs/why_solar.pdf+having+a+diverse+energy+portfolio+solar+power&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=18&gl=us) “SES Solar Two is a vital part of our renewable energy portfolio. renewables offer a smart way to create a diverse energy portfolio. The SES SolarTwo generating facility will help California meet its renewable energy requirements while achieving the mandates to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. 40 feet wide and generates 25. Solar energy reduces greenhouse gases and increases efficiency ScienceDaily 07 (“Solar Energy Conversion offers a solution to global warming.” Osborn said. “We can deliver the first phase to San Diego on existing power lines.104/search?q=cache:CZwGa2Jft8J:www. The second phase will generate 450 megawatts using 18. “The full build out of SES Solar Two will require completion of the Sunrise Powerlink.215. the best way for cities to reduce their vulnerability to unstable energy markets is to produce more of their own electricity sustainably with substantial investments in solar and other renewable sources. chief operating officer for SDG&E.000 watts. Limited sources of energy make consumers more vulnerable to unpredictable price fluctuations. The current world's energy crisis was just the latest in a long cycle of price fluctuations.” The project will be constructed in two primary phases. Just as a smart investor invests in a diverse range of stocks.” http://209. “Why Solar?” http://solensys.com/downloads/30-June-2008-Application-Filed-for-WorldsLargest-Solar-Energy-Generating Plant.” The benefits to the Southern California region will be significant and far-reaching.com/releases/2007/03/070307075611. a 150-miletransmission line proposed by SDG&E from the Imperial Valley to San Diego.” said Mike Niggli. The first will include 12. “Application Filed for the world’s largest solar energy generating plant. it is prudent for individuals to have an energy portfolio that includes a range of generation technologies.. Capitol Strategies Group. The energy market will always be volatile. The project will also spark an industry that will provide exceptional economic benefits. subsidiary of Greenworld Solutions Ltd.sciencedaily. Solar power is key to get our energy independence and diverse portfolio that’s key to avoid price fluctuations and volatility SES 06 (Solar Energy Systems Limited. the Stirling Energy will be a significant contributor to helping SDG&E meet its green energy goals. and helping the economy Osborn 08 (Bruce. The SunCatcher technology consumes no water for cooling and uses very little water to keep the mirrors clean. “As we strive for a balanced and diverse energy mix.

senior scientist and director of Argonne's Materials Science Division. in a report (view it online) published in the March issue of Physics Today. Opportunities to increase solar energy conversion as an alternative to fossil fuels are addressed in the Physics Today article. Last month.0 DDI 2008 104/136 Strange & Serrano Lab Solar energy has the power to reduce greenhouse gases and provide increased energy efficiency.S. co-authored by George Crabtree. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory. . the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the United Nations released a report confirming global warming is upon us and attributing the growing threat to the man-made burning of fossil fuels. says a scientist at the U. professor of Chemistry at Caltech and director of its Molecular Materials Research Center. and Nathan Lewis.RPS AFF 1.

RPS AFF 1. Silicon Valley dealmakers.html) Solar power hasn't swept the nation but it must and will. and innovators at state and university labs. a maker of solar systems including those at the nation's largest plant at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. .cnet. of which solar is the best understood. California's energy crisis was just the latest in a long cycle of price fluctuations. “Barriers to solar energy’s blockbuster promise. and academia at the Big Solar conference here Wednesday.” http://www.votesolar."Among the bright points noted by Smeloff and others. Ultimately. venture capital firms.California will literally live up to its "Golden State" nickname and shine as a model for the rest of the country thanks to progressive lawmakers."The time has come in the United States for large-scale solar. particularly since the fossil fuels that power it come from abroad and will eventually dry up completely.org/whysolar.com/8301-11128_3-9939715-54. Moreover. Just as a smart investor invests in a diverse range of stocks. The energy market will always be volatile. each presidential candidate supports clean energy. "The wind is to our backs on this.html) Investing in solar power increases our nation's energy independence and energy security. Solar power is inevitable – now is a key time Wenzel 08 (Elsa." said Ed Smeloff.0 105/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Resource PICS—Solar Energy (2/2) Solar power ensures energy independence and security – its key to create a diverse energy portfolio that key to success VoteSolar no date (“Why Solar. it is prudent for cities to have an energy portfolio that includes a range of generation technologies. the best way for cities to reduce their vulnerability to unstable energy markets is to produce more of their own electricity sustainably with substantial investments in solar and other renewable sources.” http://news. clean-tech start-ups. senior manager of utility project sales at SunPower. renewables offer a smart way to create a diverse energy portfolio. said members of utilities. Limited sources of energy make consumers more vulnerable to unpredictable price fluctuations. according to the event's many optimists.

Wind power is critical to maintain a diverse portfolio PrNewswire 08 (“PG&E Increases Renewable Portfolio With Horizon Wind Energy. LLC. I can recall my first exposure to wind turbine demos at Sandia in the late 70s. But to claim a chapter in tomorrow's history books. National Renewable Energy Laboratory.gov/director/awea_051705.0 106/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Resource PICS—Wind Energy Wind energy is the bedrock for other renewable energy developments and a secure. If wind falters.” http://www. the greater renewable energy community must step up to the challenge of satisfying a major portion of that future 20 terawatt clean energy shortfall that is expected by 2050. biomass. advanced nuclear fission and fusion technologies. I believe. must be energy efficiency — there's so much we can do by simply using energy more intelligently. environmentally preferred energy. vice president of Energy Procurement for PG&E. As Carl Weinberg has put it. as well as development of clean energy carriers like electricity and hydrogen. Manager of Utility Programs and Policy. diverse energy portfolio Arvizu 05 (Dr.html) The only practical answer lies in a diverse energy portfolio and to accelerate the development and use of new energy technologies. All of which brings me to the AWEA conference this week. http://www.5 meters! Today. geothermal.RPS AFF 1. solar.nrel.com/rea/news/story?id=51767) . Dan. wind is poised to play a pivotal role in the world's energy future. “Windpower 2005 – Banquet Keynote Speech. and geothermal energy." Wind energy is essential to the portfolio and provides a hedge against price fluctuations Anthony 08 (Jeff. a subsidiary of Horizon Wind Energy. But we also need to bring on new supplies from renewable energy.com/p/articles/mi_m4PRN/is_2008_July_1/ai_n27877980) Pacific Gas and Electric Company has increased its portfolio of renewables with the signing of a long-term agreement to purchase wind energy from the Arlington Wind Power Project. AWEA.” http://findarticles." First in this portfolio. Horizon will deliver 240 gigawatt hours of renewable wind energy annually to PG&E's customers throughout northern and central California. early 80s when the rotor diameter of prototype turbines was 1. Wind energy is one of the great energy success stories over the past 30 years. decarbonized fossil technologies that capture and sequester CO2. The wind community is to be applauded." said Fong Wan. wave and biomass resources. The trail is being blazed by wind today but must soon be followed by other renewable technologies. the path for less mature renewable technologies will be more difficult and we run the risk that the vision of a diverse and secure national energy portfolio will remain just that — a vision. which includes hydroelectric.renewableenergyworld. non-polluting transportation fuels. "Renewable resources continue to play a critical role in our commitment to provide our customers with reliable. what we really need is "silver buckshot. clean. LLC."Clean wind power is an integral part of our diverse renewable energy portfolio. We need to be able to capture a large fraction of that almost 1/3 of our energy economy that is not put to useful work. We all know that wind power is one of the fastest growing energy sources in the world. solar. like PV. “Clearing the Air: Wind Power and Reliability.

0 DDI 2008 107/136 Strange & Serrano Lab "Wind energy is an integral piece of our power supply portfolio. Wind power is an important part of electric utility generation portfolios. powering the equivalent of over 4. being a variable resource (meaning it generates electricity when the wind is blowing. .S.5 million homes. It provides a hedge against fuel price volatility associated with other forms of electric generation. "Can We Rely on Wind Power? Yes. not on demand) can be relied upon as part of a system that provides reliable electricity to consumers without interruption.. Yet some question whether wind power." According to many utilities and reliability authorities. Based on a growing body of analytical and operational experience. the answer is a resounding "yes. wind power can readily be accommodated into electric system operations reliably and economically. Wind power is currently supplying 48 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity annually in the U.RPS AFF 1.

S. if you’re thinking about global warming. But. and loss of biodiversity.(2) Geothermal power plants emit only a small fraction of the carbon dioxide emitted by traditional power plants on a per-megawatt hour basis. and can help reduce the overall release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere Biomass in RPS specifically is key for electricity generation EIA no date Energy Information Administration. Your question is. Like the sunlight hitting the earth every day.S. companies who support the expanded use of geothermal energy and are developing geothermal Resources worldwide for electrical power generation and direct-heat uses. Official Energy Statistics from the US Government. If we could tap just a fraction of the heat reaching the surface of the earth every year. The simple answer is no-geothermal does result in cooling.gov/oiaf/analysispaper/biomass/ The U. the earth’s heat budget is continually replenished by the radioactive decay of naturally occurring elements. we could provide all of the heat and power needed to run our society. and the earth temperature must decrease (blame the laws of thermodynamics). “Biomass for Electricity Generation. Wood and agricultural residues are burned as a fuel for cogeneration of steam and electricity in the industrial sector. using all of that heat to provide clean energy is obviously a way to go. ade association composed of U. No feasible amount of geothermal development could make even a small dent in this process.S. including flood risks. could we do enough of this to actually measurably cool the earth. carbon dioxide accounts for 83 percent of U.0 108/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Resource PICS—Geothermal/Biomass Geothermal energy can offset global warming and avoid impact of overusing fossil fuels WordPress 08 (“Can Geothermal Energy Offset Global Warming. Biomass is used for power generation in the electricity sector and for space . and almost all of the energy associated with each decay event is converted to heat.asp) Geothermal power plants emit very low levels of one of the most significant gases known to induce global warming: carbon dioxide. Drilling a well to penetrate the hot underground water or vapor (geothermal fluid).doe. (1) Experts generally agree that global warming poses significant environmental and health impacts. but the impact is insignificant.RPS AFF 1.org/gea/gea.com/2008/01/22/can-geothermal-energy-offset-global-warming/) If we extract enough heat from the earth using geothermal energy. This means there will be a net heat loss from the reservoir. Furthermore.” http://renewenergy. the energy available from the heat of the earth is enormous and largely unused as a source of energy. greenhouse gas emissions. Geothermal solves warming GEA no date (Geothermal Energy Association. some of this energy is transformed into electricity. According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). geothermal electricity consists of: Locating a suitable geothermal reservoir (underground collection of hot water or steam).” http://www. Some 42 million megawatts of energy reach the surface continually and are radiated into space as the earth cools from its initial molten state more than 4 billion years ago.eia. Using a power plant and related infrastructure to produce electricity. increases in sea level. economy uses biomass-based materials as a source of energy in many ways. Since we are using the heat of the earth to run the power plant.geo-energy. and inject some of it back into the system for reuse. and avoid the potentially tragic consequences of overusing fossil fuels. http://www. Extracting the hot fluid. Plus. forest fires. glacial melting problems. the heat content of the geothermal reservoir rocks is continually replenished by conduction of heat from the earth’s deeper interior. cool the geothermal fluid. could we offset global warming? Answer: To oversimplify.wordpress.

biomass is used for power generation.RPS AFF 1. In the electricity sector. or 0. Biomass materials can also be used directly in the manufacture of a variety of products. Biomass can be converted to a liquid form for use as a transportation fuel.1 projects that biomass will generate 15.476 billion kilowatthours of total generation.3 billion kilowatthours of electricity. and research is being conducted on the production of fuels and chemicals from biomass.3 electricity generation from biomass is projected to increase substantially. in 2020. in its Annual Energy Outlook 2002 (AEO2002) reference case. . The Energy Information Administration (EIA). In scenarios that reflect the impact of a 20-percent renewable portfolio standard (RPS)2 and in scenarios that assume carbon dioxide emission reduction requirements based on the Kyoto Protocol.3 percent of the projected 5.0 DDI 2008 109/136 Strange & Serrano Lab heating in residential and commercial buildings.

just as clean coal should compete with dirty coal and light water reactors with advanced nuclear generators. For instance.RPS AFF 1. The definition of eligible renewable resources could be based on the renewable aspects of the fuels used rather than any particular technologies deployed. Gradual benchmarks ensure that new renewable generation is developed without having to distinguish between “existing” and “new” renewable energy systems.newenergychoices. http://www. Such sources would neither diversify energy resources nor achieve the economic benefits of a vibrant renewable energy sector. Healthy market-based competition ensures that the best mechanisms for utilizing each fuel source are supported. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS).pdf) A national RPS should include all renewable resources and discriminate against none. Including incremental hydropower also allows areas like the Southeast and the Pacific Northwest to benefit from their regions’ substantial sources of existing clean energy. a national RPS would avoid bitter debates concerning whether certain “upgrades” to existing systems make them “new. By including both new and existing generators as eligible resources. Avoiding this debate reduces administrative complexity and frees generators from continuously monitoring regulatory rulings to determine whether a particular expenditure will be considered maintenance and refurbishment of an existing facility or a new investment that qualifies toward the RPS mandate. While alternative technologies such as non-renewable distributed generation. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris.0 110/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Resource PICS—RPS= only and all renewables RPS should include all renewables and exclude none Dr. And. eligible resources could be defined as: Any electrical generator that creates electricity from sunlight. clean coal with carbon capture and storage. A fuel-based definition of eligible resources would include large hydroelectric facilities. and energy efficiency should be encouraged. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). a fuel-based definition of eligible resources would ensure that truly renewable resources attain a greater proportion of the nation’s electricity fuel portfolio.profit organization committed to reforming U. a national non.” as with the feud over New Source Review under the Clean Air Act. renewable plant or animal material.S. 2007. . Renewables should compete with other renewables. finally. wind.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. A fuel-based definition does not rely on policymakers to determine the forms of technology that should receive market preference and does not require policymakers to continuously revise the mandate to include new technology that may be developed. falling water. June. and/or natural geothermal sources. there are strong market-based reasons that they should not be directly included in an RPS. The construction of new hydroelectric facilities and incremental improvements to existing ones could help utilities to use renewable resources to provide base-load power.

and ocean technologies are not projected to have net capacity additions.183 megawatts (93 percent) were generated by wind. such as biomass and solar. Although other renewable sources. a major logistical obstacle will remain.” http://cei. a mandate for wind power. have long-term potential. the near-term potential is almost certainly at the consumer level rather than large-scale generation. solar thermal. The notion that an RPS will include a “portfolio” of renewable energy sources is misleading—wind energy is the only economically viable renewable energy source given current technologies. Huge investments will be needed to build infrastructure to gather and transport large quantities of biomass to generating plants. “Gone with the wind. Renewable Energy is Wind Energy. *This might be a dangerous card. solar photovoltaic. just look over it. 2007. With solar energy. June 12. Myron Ebell is the Director of Energy and Global Warming Policy at CEI.3 Thus.0 111/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Resource PICS—Wind power key Wind power is the most used renewable.used 93% of the time William Yeatman and Myron Ebell (Yeatman is an Energy Policy Analyst at the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI). the federal Energy Information Administration (EIA) found that “non-hydro electric technologies such as geothermal. a renewable portfolio standard is. In other words.335 megawatts of renewable energy use attributable to state renewable standards. Even assuming that these technologies improve significantly in the next decade or two. they are currently no more than niche technologies. again because of cost and reliability issues. 2. is an established technology.RPS AFF 1.pdf). Wind power.”2 As of 2004. in reality. Also the pdf has a lot of RPS neg stuff . In an analysis of the impact of a 10-percent nationwide RPS on the energy industry. on the other hand.org/pdf/5982. of the estimated 2. The technology to convert biomass into electricity remains prohibitively expensive and uncertain. the potential for photovoltaic panels is greater on rooftops than across deserts.

”346 The sale of Shell Solar’s crystalline solar business to SolarWorld in 2006 is expected to secure even more access to silicon and promote more efficient production processes with higher yields. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).profit organization committed to reforming U.newenergychoices. These expansions ensure that an additional silicon production capacity of 5. At the same time.0 112/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Resource PICS—Solar power viable/competitive Solar power industry is growing and becoming increasingly competitive Dr. many silicon companies have massively expanded their production processes: Tokuyama is building a 200-ton half commercial vapor to liquid distillation pilot plant in Japan. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). http://www.RPS AFF 1. The company REC is looking to build a 200-ton pilot plant in Moses Lake.pdf) Most companies now have extensive stockpiles of silicon needed to guarantee PV production.” He concluded that falling costs will make the solar power industry increasingly competitive. production costs are projected to fall dramatically. noted that the industry was seeing “incremental changes in innovation which are pushing down costs and helping the sector's expansion. 2007.348 Annual revenues for the solar industry are expected to increase more than fourfold from $20 billion 2006 to $90 billion in 2010. 2007. “at this time we have 100 percent of our silicon wafer supply contractually secured.S. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. . a national non.349 In April.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. the managing director of Australia’s largest PV manufacturer.347 Since the high demand for PV modules has enabled manufactures to pre-pay for supply. and many have signed fixed-price contracts guaranteeing a supply of silicon.345 The CFO of one large international PV manufacturer recently boasted that.900 tons per year dedicated exclusively for PV arrays will come online in 2008. June. Wacker already has a 100-ton fluidized bed reactor pilot plant in Germany. WA.

and rural electric cooperatives—creates an equal playing field and avoids creating inconsistencies in regulation. utilities with no load growth are exempted from the state’s RPS mandate.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. for example.profit organization committed to reforming U. a national RPS avoids the kind of regulatory unpredictability that initially plagued Connecticut’s program. municipalities. June. Regulated utilities. decrease competition.newenergychoices.S. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). the state’s RPS exempted default service providers. low-cost non-renewable electricity from exempt generators. and lead to failure Dr. publicly owned utilities. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. In practice. would not be required to subsidize the generation of dirty.pdf) Some state-based RPS statutes initially excluded some power providers in an attempt to protect certain types of utilities. a national non. creating speculation among all of the state’s regulated utilities that the law would not be enforced at all. the attempt to carve out exemptions through imprecise statutory language created confusion and uncertainty for regulated entities. A standard applying to all providers also creates better economies of scale and ultimately helps drive down the cost of renewable generation for all suppliers. By applying the mandate uniformly and without exemption. which pay to clean the air and conserve the water. A2: exclude some power provider PIC .362 And in Washington. Requiring all retail providers to meet the mandate reduces opportunities for “free riders” within the electricity sector. In Connecticut. http://www. 2007.363 Applying the standard to all retail power providers—including investor owned utilities. if parts of the state experience decreased population growth or diminished electricity demand.RPS AFF 1. load serving entities would be absolved from their regulatory burden entirely.0 113/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Exceptions create confusion. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS).

but phased in gradually to protect utilities.S. The Maine legislature passed an RPS that took effect in March.”358 A2: not 20% CP . a national RPS must set a target large enough to achieve economies of scale in manufacturing. “has failed to lead to any new renewable resources. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. The clearest example of a state RPS that has failed to produce new renewable energy is Maine.356 NREL analysts concluded that Maine’s RPS. However.pdf) Lesson 1: The RPS target must be large enough to create economies of scale. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). a national non.RPS AFF 1.”357 Even the Maine Public Utilities Commission admitted that “the experience to date. If the target is not set large enough. and has failed to generate significant revenues above commodity electricity market prices.profit organization committed to reforming U. it may fail to promote renewable energy technologies at all. http://www. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).newenergychoices. 2007. existing hydroelectric. for example. setting an immediate and seemingly large target of 30 (and including large hydroelectric facilities as an eligible resource). To bring the benefits of renewable energy to most consumers.0 114/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab RPS of 20% by 2020 economically works the best Dr. Economic models have found significant benefits from a 20 percent by 2020 mandate. reveals that the current portfolio requirement is not satisfying the Restructuring Act’s stated policy of encouraging the promotion of new renewable energy resources. however. biomass. and landfill gas generators in the state were already exceeding the standard. 2000.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. June.

AG) Beyond the start-again-stop-again nature of the PTC. Providing subsidies outside this structure would be redundant if all utilities were subject to mandatory wholesale procurement. Corp.8 billion worth of funding to subsidize costly "clean coal" facilities. there will be increasingly large tax credits to entities that hold PTCs. 12 Fordham J. and PTC allocations rise. Ptc isn’t comprehensive Shoock 7 – JD Fordham Law (Corey. One concern is whether the continued growth of wind energy might in fact threaten the PTC and turn it into a victim of its own success." Critics cite that the only parties who benefit from a boondoggle like this are fossil-fuel burning utilities. It would also appear that well-developed mandatory wholesale procurement standards render subsidies such as the PTC redundant. provided "accelerated review and approval processes for new refinery facilities. mining companies.RPS AFF 1. Given the stark differences between the two candidates for legislative support. included heavy appropriations to fossil fuel-based initiatives. 290 the problem with the legislation as far as both the renewable energy industry and its non-commercially motivated proponents were concerned was that it. 294 ." and appropriated $ 1. When taking into account the capitalintensive nature of "clean coal. 293 the federal government appears to be. As RPS requirements increase. Mandatory wholesale procurement requires retail providers to procure renewable energy. Electricity journal 19. L. Renewable Energy Development Incentives. as the adage goes. While the PTC at present is a key factor in developing renewable energy. "robbing Peter to pay Paul. its future raises many questions. ScienceDirect. The costs of the renewable energy and the conventional energy that the retail provider procures are included in the retail rates paid by customers.0 115/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 ptc cp PTC causes cost overruns a that RPS avoids Birgisson 6 – renewable energy lawyer (Gunnar and Erik Petersen. and energy lobbyists. 292 The like electricity production policies before it. As more wind and other renewable energy projects come on-line and earn the 10-year PTC. Congress seems to have disregarded fossil fuel externalities. greater amounts of renewable energy are generated. a cycle which [*1046] EPAct 2005 continued. It is an open question whether or not this is sustainable. This acceleration will be magnified as RPSs ramp up. provided a 300 million barrel expansion to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (from 700 million barrels to 1 billion). AG) The interplay between the PTC and RPSs also warrants consideration. the impact on the federal budget grows. & Fin.3. also 291 The Act funding of both renewable energy and fossil fuels by the federal government show that Congress is most concerned with keeping prices down for electricity rather than promoting a particular industry over another. The PTC gives tax credits for the entire output of a qualifying generator for 10 years and there is no yearly cap on each plant or all plants." in which one of the most promising procedures involves burning gasified coal and pumping a mixture of the fumes under ground risking leaks and water contamination. 1011.

A2 tax solves CP .0 116/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Tax incentives fail without RPS Union of Concerned Scientists 8/27/07 (http://www.RPS AFF 1. Page] Setting minimum standards has been an effective and essential policy for achieving many critical societal goals. The combination of setting minimum standards. For example. The RES creates a market for renewable technologies that are commercially viable or close to viable and helps reduce their costs (see below). the production tax credit for wind has produced most new wind capacity in states that also have a state RES.org/clean_energy/clean_energy_policies/the-renewable-electricitystandard. including net metering and other financial incentives. there needs to be a policy that creates a market for the technologies. company environmental performance. Renewable energy production tax credits are vital for leveling the tax playing field with fuel-intensive technologies that pay lower property taxes and can deduct fuel expenses. Complementary policies. but do not necessarily overcome other critical market barriers.html#5) [S. are also needed to encourage the development of higher cost renewable emerging technologies with significant long term potential such as customer-sited solar photovoltaics. while providing incentives for exceeding standards has proven to be a cost-effective approach to improving performance. and building and product safety. such as increasing vehicle and appliance efficiency.ucsusa. In order to ensure the tax credits are effective.

AG) Before the bill becomes law. however. . has expressed confidence that a compromise energy bill will be enacted does not include an RPS standard.10. BioCycle 44. it must first be reconciled with the House of Representatives energy bill passed in April that The Congress failed to pass an energy bill last year because the House and Senate could not craft a compromise. The RPS and the electricity title overall were major areas of disagreement in last year's conference. p 40. Republican leadership. State Policies Set Mandates for Renewable Energy. ebsco. this fall.R. which contained an RPS.0 117/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Politics—Controversy RPS stalls the agenda—makes compromises impossible Drabick 3 – Environmental and Energy Study Institute (J. however. The Senate's energy bill this year is an exact duplicate of the bill it passed last year.RPS AFF 1..

therefore. It is safe to say. Ebsco.RPS AFF 1.0 118/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Politics—GOP hates GOP hates Sovacool 7 (Benjamin and Jack Barkenbus. Necessary but Insufficient. .6. 102 legislative proposals dealing with climate change have been introduced from 1997 to 2004. AG) In the last 10 years—from 1997 to 2006—federal bills promoting RPS were introduced in Congress 17 times. Environment 49.13 All have been beaten back by Republican-dominated Congresses. that considerable state action in both cases has arisen not because of some judgment that statebased action is optimal or preferable but rather because of the perceived policy vacuum at the federal level.12 In addition.

quadrupling planned expenditures to $56 billion by 2011. prices increase because there is not enough electricity to meet demand.S. http://www. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. . Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).newenergychoices. June. renewable energy systems can start providing revenue to help pay down debt on transmission investments while conventional plants are waiting to come online. Market forces create perverse incentives for some utilities to profit from congestion prices. RPS stimulates infrastructure development gaining public popularity Dr. 2007.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.profit organization committed to reforming U. Expedited debt repayment decreases capital costs and lowers electricity rates. delaying new transmission until the system is at risk of catastrophic failure. • A national RPS speeds recovery of transmission investments Because of their quicker leadtimes. • A national RPS forces critical transmission system upgrades Maintaining adequate transmission will require the construction of 26. a national non. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS).RPS AFF 1. • Renewable energy overcomes public objection to new transmission lines Case studies show that public opposition to transmission lines turns into widespread support when utilities justify the infrastructure with the need to interconnect new renewable generation.pdf) Transmission – A National RPS Speeds Investment in Critical Infrastructure • Utilities benefit from congestion pricing.600 miles of new transmission in the next decade. When transmission is saturated.0 119/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Politics—Plan pop with public Although generally unpopular.

0 120/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab Politics—Plan unpop National RPS is so unpopular that it has already been rejected 17 times in Congress Solve Climate (“Renewable Portfolio Standards: America’s clean energy standard.” 4/24/2008. And.and rejected -.1 billion nationwide. in fact. the one other proven policy that has spurred clean energy development in America -. . too. to drive the point home. http://solveclimate.RPS AFF 1.is on the verge of expiring and could be on the chopping block in Washington. The House passed one in 2007. The US Senate has passed some form of it three times since 2002. Congress has never managed to agree on a common RPS. a federal RPS has been considered by Congress -.the federal tax credit for renewables -. especially when you throw this into the mix: The Network for New Energy Choices found in its 2007 report that a national RPS would create 80% more jobs than comparable investment in fossil fuels and would save electricity consumers in every region money -. The problem? A national RPS requires coordinated and coherent federal leadership on climate change and energy.com/blog/20080424/renewable-portfolio-standards-america-s-clean-energysavior).$49. Seems obvious. Over the past ten years.17 times.

The University of Wyoming estimates that up to 80 percent of the cost of coal for ratepayers in Illinois is to cover railway costs. have great value as a reliable source of power during extreme peak loads.4 billion. they can help offset electricity otherwise derived from natural gas-fired “peaking” or reserve generation units.S. operations and maintenance. natural gas prices rose by an average of 15 percent per year.1 A Matter of Stability and Equity: The Case for Federal Action on 253 Renewable Portfolio Standards in the U. Coal at the mouth of a mine in Wyoming. Energy & Environment 19. By the time it reaches a power plant outside of Chicago. [48] Because some renewable resources generate the most electricity during periods of peak demand. As a result. fully constructing the natural gas infrastructure recommended by the Administration’s National Energy Plan (which calls for over 301. A national RPS would reduce the cost of renewable energy by creating economies of scale in manufacturing. But the switch only increased demand for coal. commercial. Many renewable energy technologies are now less expensive than new fossil fuel plants that generate the same amount of energy. and industrial gas bills.2. caused prices to surge. investors are exploring how renewable resources can serve as a hedge $126. Nine of fifteen would save anywhere from $10 to $40 billion from decreased natural gas prices. by 2006. A Matter of Stability and Equity.RPS AFF 1.000 MW. and “hedge” against volatile natural gas prices. Between 1995 and 2005. to $0. Reductions in the wellhead price will not only have the effect of reducing wholesale and retail electricity rates but will also reduce residential. [46] Aggregate fossil fuel costs nearly doubled in the four years between 2000 and 2004. from $0. The price increased nearly 7 percent each year until. all regions also can enjoy substantial cost savings from decreased fossil fuel transportation costs. for example. billion (in 2002 dollars) on their electricity and natural gas bills by 2020. AG) UCS determined that a 20 percent by 2020 federal RPS would decrease consumer energy bills by an average of 1. The cumulative costs to transport natural gas may be even higher.5 percent in the long term.000 MW reduces the peak load for that day by about 3. an installed PV array with a capacity of 5. for example. a 1 percent reduction in natural gas demand can reduce the price of natural gas by up to 2. its price increases and so does the value of the renewable resources used to displace it.8 percent to 2 percent. not because parts or labor had gotten more expensive. [52] By developing indigenous renewable resources.000 per mile [53]. In 2003. especially the financial risks associated with natural gas price volatility and the risk of future . installation. Natural gas transportation and distribution already account for 41 percent of the residential price of natural gas. for example. Researchers at Resources for the Future calculated that. driving the price up. the more gas is saved and the more gas prices are reduced. The economics for renewable energy have become so favorable in recent years because operation and maintenance expenses for utilities utilizing fossil fuels rose by nearly $26 billion from 2002 to 2006. [50] This inverse relationship between renewable generation and natural gas prices was confirmed by researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) who reviewed the projected effect of 20 different RPS scenarios on future natural gas prices: Each 1 percent reduction in natural gas demand could lead to long-term average wellhead price reductions of 0. for example. cutting in half the number of natural.0 121/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Price DA—Electricity/Gas RPS saves consumers money by driving down gas prices and electricity rates Sovacool 8 (Benjamin. Photovoltaics. the cost of coal in Central Appalachia was $35 per ton. Ninety-six percent of this increase was driven by rising fossil fuel prices. [54] against electricity sector risks [55]. In California. [49] The value of renewable energy to offset natural gas combustion varies with the projected supply (and thus the price) of natural gas. given the historic volatility of the natural gas market.gas “peakers” needed to ensure reserve capacity. with some of the models predicting more aggressive reductions. When demand for natural gas increases (or supply decreases). in turn.000 miles of new natural gas transmission and distribution pipelines) could cost ratepayers as much as Why do some utilities claim that a national RPS would substantially increase electricity prices. a 20 percent RPS by 2020 would lead to substantial cost-savings for four reasons: A national RPS would reduce competition for fossil fuels and lower future prices of coal and natural gas. [47] A national RPS can save consumers money especially by reducing demand for natural gas. Increased reliance on renewable energy would offset expensive natural gas-fired generation. IgentaConnect.5 percent per year and save consumers a total of $49. which. costs about $5 per ton. [45] According to UCS.0437 per kWh. Several studies have documented that an increase in renewable energy production would decrease costs for electricity generation by offsetting the combustion of natural gas. [51] LBNL researchers reviewed 13 studies and 20 specific analyses all confirming studies specifically evaluating national RPS proposals of 10 to 20 percent found that consumers that the higher the level of renewable energy penetration. Since the construction of natural gas pipelines can cost as much as $420. Substantial evidence from many peer-reviewed studies demonstrates an excellent correlation between available solar resources and periods of peak demand.023 per kWh. a ton of coal in the same region cost close to $60 a ton. many electricity generators switched back to coal-fired peaking units. The overbuilding of gas-fired peaking plants in the 1990s resulted in skyrocketing demand for natural gas. given the overwhelming consensus that investment in renewable energy could offset rising natural gas prices? Increasingly. that same coal costs about $30.

The authors noted that: Utilities and others who have conducted resource acquisition. most utility estimates are skewed against renewable generation. rather than to projected costs based on uncertain gas price forecasts. potentially to the tune of ~0. renewable energy would be substantially cheaper in many cases. there is a premium associated with purchasing large volumes of natural gas at a guaranteed price that most utilities do not account for when comparing the cost of natural gas-fired generation to the cost of renewable generation.RPS AFF 1. by definition. [57] According to LBNL’s findings. planning and modeling studies based on EIA reference case (as well as other) gas price forecasts. LBNL researchers compared forward gas prices from 2000 to 2003 to utility forecasts of natural gas prices (based on the EIA reference case over this same period) and found that the methodology used by most utilities to compare the projected cost of renewable energy to the projected cost of natural gas created a bias in favor of the gas. inexhaustible.0 122/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab environmental regulations. . Historically... or fixed-priced supply contracts (called “forward” prices). Since the supply of renewable resources is. utility analyses have tended to rely on uncertain longterm forecasts of spot natural gas prices rather than on prices that can be locked-in through futures. By underestimating the hedging costs associated with fossil fuels and overlooking the cost-savings of fixed-price renewable fuels. the cost of fueling a renewable energy system is “fixed”.6 cents/kWh levelized. This is because if consumers are rational and value price stability. On first glance. it would appear that comparing fixed-priced renewable resources to volatile natural gas prices would favor renewable technologies. then the cost of fixed-price renewable generation should be compared to the hedged or guaranteed cost of natural gas-fired generation.have arguably produced “biased” results that favor variable-price gas-fired over fixed-price renewable generation. If utilities accounted for this “hedging” cost. However.4–0. [56] Utilities trying to hedge against the volatility of natural gas prices forecast future costs.

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Electricity prices won’t skyrocket—their statistics rely on false assumptions and ours are more qualified Cooper 8 (Christopher, A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?, Electricity journal 21.5,
ScienceDirect, AG)

One of the more curious criticisms Michaels launches against a national RPS policy is his claim that fixed-price renewable fuels that displace variably-priced fossil fuels merely transfer risk from utilities to customers. Citing a study he wrote himself more than 12 years ago, Michaels
asserts that “the fixed-price wind contract, however, gives the utility a predictable stream of expenses that regulators will almost surely approve. The contract shifts risks to captives and conceals the magnitude of those risks.” Presumably, the magnitude of the risk that is shifted from utilities to customers depends on the volatility of the natural gas market. So Michaels concludes that “the utility gets a bargain when gas is expensive and overpays when it is low.” But Michaels’

dismissal of the benefits of fixed-price renewables relies on a simplistic explanation of utility resource planning and natural gas markets. Utilities that try to use renewables to hedge against the volatility of natural gas prices generally attempt to estimate future costs using uncertain long-term forecasts of spot natural gas prices rather than prices that can be locked in through futures or fixed-price contracts (called “forward” prices). This calculation ignores the significant risk inherent in this transaction. As Michaels admits, if uncertain forecasts underestimate the cost of natural gas when it is actually purchased, the utility that bet on gas instead of renewables will have overpaid tremendously in opportunity costs. Researchers at the Berkeley Lab compared forward gas prices from 2000 to 2003 with utility forecasts of natural gas prices over the same period and found that the utility forecasts produced a bias in favor of natural gas generation that amounted to anywhere from 0.4 to 0.6 cents per kWh levelized. In other words, the Berkeley Lab found that the additional risk associated with betting on variably-priced natural gas over fixed-price renewable generation cost utilities a premium even before the price differential of the fuel is considered. This is because, “if consumers are rational and value price stability, then the cost of fixed-price renewable generation should be compared to the hedged or guaranteed cost of natural gas-fired generation, rather than to projected costs based on uncertain gas price forecasts.”12 Michaels’ claim that fixed-price renewables contracts merely shift risk to consumers appears to ignore this “risk premium” altogether. By decreasing the total amount of assumed risk, relying on renewables to displace variably-priced natural gas generation saves consumers money even if it shifts more of the risk to them. The risk (and hence the
cost) diminishes independent of the price a utility ultimately pays (or would have paid) for the natural gas. But even a simplistic model of assumed risk favors fixed-price renewables. An overwhelming

amount of evidence buttresses former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan's prediction in 2003 that “today's tight natural gas markets have been a long time in coming, and future prices suggest that we are not apt to return to earlier periods of relative abundance anytime soon.”13 Shrinking reserve margins, delay in the construction of new gas pipelines, more stringent emissions regulations, and the likelihood of future carbon controls will all contribute to an increased demand for natural gas by the electricity sector and virtually guarantee that the price of natural gas will continue to increase.14

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RPS decreases natural gas prices and electricity price rises would be small—prefer official sources Drabick 3 – Environmental and Energy Study Institute (J.R., State Policies Set Mandates for Renewable Energy, BioCycle 44.10, p
39, ebsco, AG) Most importantly, however, an RPS can help achieve these benefits at little extra cost to consumers. According

to EIA, a 20 percent by 2020 national RPS would lead to a four percent increase in electricity prices in 2020, and would actually decrease natural gas wellhead prices by 17 percent in 2020, as compared to their reference case. With such little cost implications, the reliability, economic security, and environmental and public health
benefits of an RPS become even more attractive.

[EIA provides official energy statistics from the Department of Energy] The true social cost of status quo energy reliance is long term—this outweighs immeditate link Sovacool 8 (Benjamin, Renewable Energy: Economically Sound, Politically Difficult, Electricity journal 21.5, AG) Researchers from the Alliance to Save Energy found that if damages in the form of noxious emissions and impacts on human health resulting from combustion of coal, oil, and natural gas were included in electricity prices, coal would cost 261.8 percent more than it does; oil 13.4 percent;

natural gas 0.5 percent. If priced to include the risks from greenhouse gas emissions and climate change, the costs of coal would rise 35 to 70 percent more; oil 9 to 18 percent more; natural gas 6 to 12 percent more. The researchers also found that if electricity was priced this way, fossil fuel use would decrease 37.7 percent compared to projections; CO2 emissions would decrease 44.1 percent, and GDP would improve 7.7 percent and household wealth jump 5.5 percent (primarily as the result of improved health).34 Daniel Kammen and Sergio Pacca found that if they internalized the cost of mortality and asthma – just two items – into electricity rates, and assumed the value of a life was $5 million (cheap in my opinion), then the annual cost of operation for conventional coal power plants in Illinois, Massachusetts, and Washington was 50 ¢/kWh, almost eight times higher than the average 6.5 ¢/kWh paid by consumers.35 How does such an unfair and polluting system continue, astute readers may ask? Greenpeace estimated that American oil, natural gas, and coal companies spend approximately $31 million every year on lobbying and campaign contributions.36 During important elections, the numbers jump significantly: oil and gas companies contributed about $255 million to political campaigns and electric utilities an additional $20 million for the presidential election in 2004. From 2003 to 2006, fossil fuel lobbyists contributed about $58 million to state-level campaigns alone. Over the same period, renewable energy lobbyists spent just $500,000.37 VII. Conclusion No, the sheer difficulty with promoting renewables is not economic but social and political. The

challenge is to convince politicians to put the needs of the public above those of the industry, and to get the electricity marketplace to function as it should in theory—to accurately price the $422 billion in external costs that the industry surreptitiously shifts to society. Blaming the unfavorable
“economics” behind renewables when the existing electricity market is so distorted is almost as bad as believing that purple cows make the milk in Europe.

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Michaels warrants go aff Cooper 8 (Christopher, A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?, Electricity journal 21.5,
ScienceDirect, AG)

Internal contradictions are a tale-tell sign that an opponent's ideology has muddled his logic. Michaels’ case against a national RPS is replete with them. For example, in a nod to economic determinism,

Michaels surmises, “if renewables were efficient compliance investments, utilities would already have chosen them.” The fact that utilities have shown a “lack of interest,” he concludes, proves that RPS-induced investment in renewable fuels would represent a misallocation of resources. Setting aside for the moment his claim that utilities have shown little interest in renewables, Michaels’ own analysis undermines his claim that renewables are a poor use of utility funds. In

trying to prove that a national RPS is unnecessary to capture economies of scale in the manufacture of renewable technologies, Michaels’ asserts that “the existing renewables industry has also had few problems accessing the capital markets. New technologies are attracting venture capital and firms as large as General Electric are using their own cash, all without a national RPS.” The contradiction is clear: if capital markets are flooding the renewables industry with cash, why would utility investments in renewables represent a poor use of resources? Or, to turn Michaels’ determinism against itself, if renewables really were a poor investment of resources, venture capitalists would not be betting their own cash on the success of these technologies. Another contradiction is even more obvious. In building his case against a national RPS as an efficient emissions control policy, Michaels claims that “a national RPS will not affect the total emissions of criteria pollutants.” According to Michaels, this is because utilities that are required to invest in
renewable generation in a world with a national RPS will sell their pollution allowances to utilities that “chose not pollute” because allowances were too expensive. The availability of cheap pollution allowances, Michaels asserts, would lead to increased conventional fuel combustion so that the result is no net decrease in emissions.8 But in another section of his analysis, Michaels

asserts that decreased demand for natural gas under a national RPS will not affect the long-term price of natural gas because, “if the market is near equilibrium, the fall in demand will bring losses to some producers, who will abandon the industry when divestment becomes feasible.” Production will shrink, according to Michaels, until the price of natural gas increases and the marginal producer can break even. Michaels advances this theory in order to prove that every dollar saved by users of natural gas represents a dollar lost by natural gas producers so that “the net benefit to producers and consumers of gas as a group is zero.” Michaels’ own analysis undermines his claim that renewables are a poor use of utility funds. Unfortunately, the logic of his argument requires that Michaels admit that renewable generation displaces natural gas combustion to such an extent that marginal producers of natural gas would abandon the industry entirely. In other words, by Michaels’ own assertion, natural gas producers would not benefit from all the new conventional generation that he claims would result from the availability of cheap pollution allowances. Rather than spurring new natural gas combustion from utilities that otherwise could not afford the pollution allowances, here Michaels admits that a national RPS really would displace natural gas combustion (and to such an extent that the natural gas industry
shrinks in direct proportion to the growth in renewables). As non-polluting renewables displace polluting natural gas facilities under a national RPS policy, total emissions of criteria pollutants decrease dramatically.

Michaels method is flawed and just proves why states bad Cooper 8 (Christopher, A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?, Electricity journal 21.5,
ScienceDirect, AG) Nevertheless,

Michaels’ analysis is based either on flawed or outdated data about renewable generation induced by existing state RPS policies. For example, in determining renewable generation developed as a result of state RPS policies, Michaels counts only generation developed within the state. But there is ample evidence that developers are pursuing a significant amount of new renewable generation within non-RPS states for the purpose of selling the resulting electricity and/or RECs to states with RPS policies where they will command a better price.9 In April 2008, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory released its status report on renewable portfolios standards in the United States with data through 2007. It is hard to miss the report's determination that “regardless of the details, it is nevertheless evident that existing

0 DDI 2008 126/136 Strange & Serrano Lab state RPS policies have already had a sizeable impact on new renewable resource development. the criticism appears more an indictment of state RPS compliance mechanisms than a justification for rejecting a national policy. by state RPS policies. roughly 65 percent of the total wind additions in the U. were motivated.S.” For example. Berkeley Lab estimates that from 2001 through 2007. at least in part. .RPS AFF 1.10 If true.

5. ScienceDirect. add additional transmission capacity that increases reliability by providing an alternative route for power when some lines are unavailable. However. Turn—national RPS decreases transmission costs Cooper 8 (Christopher. counter to Michaels’ assertion. this calculation would require utilities to assess future revenues derived from the transmission costs of electricity that runs through the new infrastructure. Second.” Again. And any additional transmission required to access renewable resources can.0 127/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Price DA—A2 Transmission Costs Transmission lines costs are low and non-unique Cooper 8 (Christopher. ratepayers by allowing utilities to pay down the financing on a transmission project sooner rather than later. A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?. First. his objections cannot be considered a rational justification for rejecting a national RPS. but are likely to expand to more states in the near future. those at nearby locations are also likely to be doing so.16 Third. But. Electricity journal 21. means that its power has no other path to loads and necessitates more costly reliability Michaels’ analysis overlooks that much of this new transmission is or will be required by existing state RPS policies. A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?. this policy change decreases the cost of transmission to reliability. GE researchers found that. however. that. Losing a radial line to an isolated wind source. In theory. On the contrary. “integrating 10. politically unlikely scenario. Whether because of environmental concerns or to cost-effectively access cheap sources of coal or natural gas. Under this new arrangement. Electricity journal 21.7 and $3. But FERC's new rules also create an opportunity for mischief. In theory. ScienceDirect.000 MW of renewables (nearly all wind) to comply with Texas’ 2025 RPS will require between $1. in the absence of such a much of the transmission costs that Michaels attributes to a national RPS are really transmission costs that utilities will have to absorb as a result of state RPS policies. it is a fallacy that transmission required to access renewable resources is any more restricted than transmission required to access conventional resources.RPS AFF 1. According to Michaels. under new Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) rules designed to create incentives for investment in much-needed transmission infrastructure. utilities may begin to recover the costs of transmission projects before the projects are completed and before new capacity is available to use the infrastructure. if planned correctly. for arrangements. when turbines are spread out in a project and projects are spread throughout the state. AG) Even so. As such. an abrupt drop in total output becomes so unlikely that there was no need for backup baseload generation to ensure system this research (as well as several other studies) indicates that the greater geographical dispersion of renewable generation facilities that would be required under a national RPS would increase grid reliability compared to a patchwork of statebased RPS programs.” In an analysis of actual output records from wind farms in New York State over a five-year period. AG) A standard objection to RPS mandates that Michaels repeats in his analysis is that a national RPS will cost billions of dollars in new transmission lines. researchers for General Electric found that no sudden change in wind output was sufficiently rapid to qualify as a loss-of-generation contingency that would affect grid stability. This hypothetical case is used to estimate how much debt a project will incur relative to its equity. given the current political reality that state RPS policies not only exist. conventional generation facilities are often located as far from load centers as some renewable generation facilities. example. there are good reasons why a national RPS will decrease the inevitable transmission costs associated with state RPS policies and help speed the recovery of utility costs for new transmission infrastructure.5. history proves false Michaels’ claim that expanded connection of wind facilities prevents system operators from economizing on reserves because “if units at one location are producing little. such an arrangement raises the obvious question: how do utilities know what a transmission project will cost prior to the project's completion? FERC allows utilities to calculate a rate of return based on a “hypothetical capital structure” that may end up being different from the actual capitalization of the transmission project.15 In fact. transmission lines required to access new renewable generation would cost more per kWh than transmission required for new conventional generation because “a new line in an interconnected grid normally increases reliability by providing an alternative path when another is out of service.0 billion in new transmission. unscrupulous utilities have an incentive to craft a hypothetical capital The answer is that . This oversight is especially alarming given that Michaels acknowledges. while the wind can vary rapidly at a given location.” Michaels’ may be arguing for rescinding the 25-plus state RPS policies.

0 DDI 2008 128/136 Strange & Serrano Lab structure with the goal of achieving excessive rates of return on transmission investments.”17 . Indeed. during deliberations over the new rules.RPS AFF 1. the American Public Power Association warned that hypothetical capital structures “can result in an investor windfall that could substantially increase the actual levels to far in excess of the Commission's allowed return on equity.

A National Renewable Portfolio Standard: Politically Correct or Just Plain Correct?. . utilities can overcome opposition that would delay or stop transmission upgrades under normal circumstances. Therefore. local stakeholders accused the company of not proposing an adequate amount of new transmission and not working to build it fast enough! Local landowners and advocates perceived the environmental and economic benefits from renewable energy and that perception translated into overwhelming support for Xcel's transmission upgrades. In 2003. Ron Poff of American Electric Power (AEP) has commented that “transmission is the most difficult project to site and more so than generation. Xcel Energy received approval from the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to site 178 miles of new transmission lines and four new substations to facilitate a tripling in size of its Buffalo Ridge wind farm. In a remarkable reversal of norms. whose transmission lines were already fully subscribed. Xcel justified the new transmission as critical to expanding wind power generation at Buffalo Ridge. AEP sought permission to build an 89-mile transmission line through parts of West Virginia and Virginia. for example. Puget Sound Energy (PSE) proved FPL's boast was achievable in practice when it brought 83 1. But some recent experiences suggest that utilities can overcome opposition to transmission projects by justifying them as necessary to interconnect new renewable resources. In most cases these costs are capitalized as the project moves forward. because renewable energy projects have construction lead-times that are years (or even decades) faster than conventional or nuclear facilities. Third. it should depress the projected capital costs of transmission expansions and provide FERC with a natural check against excessive rate increases. After major concessions to objectors (including rerouting the line to avoid the area's rivers and wildlife).21 While not all utilities will achieve Xcel's level of success.19 Second. speed cost recovery on transmission infrastructure.5.22 So new renewable generation induced by a national RPS would decrease the capitalization costs of new transmission. line owners are not allowed to discriminate on the basis of generation source in the distribution of transmission resources.”20 Poff should know. transmission built initially to access renewable resources actually benefits the entire portfolio of generation sources. The cost savings associated with quicker project approvals result in lower rates for consumers who would otherwise pay for the delays in higher capitalization costs. and provide new avenues for conventional generation. Early in the public participation process. In 1990. thus lowering electricity prices Cooper 8 (Christopher.0 129/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Price DA—A2 Transmission Costs RPS solves abuse by capital structures and recovers transmission costs. the Buffalo Ridge experience provides a case study for how utilities can win public support for network upgrades that would otherwise face substantial opposition and delay. If this expedited debt repayment is calculated in hypothetical capital structures. a national RPS provides revenue to help pay down debt on transmission investments. AG) There are at least three reasons why a national RPS provides FERC a check against the abuse of hypothetical capital structures and helps speed the recovery of costs on transmission infrastructure.8 MW wind turbines at its Hopkins Ridge Wind Project from foundation pour to commercial operation in exactly six months and nine days. First. the project finally began transmitting power some 16 years later! Delays in transmission siting and development add substantially to the cost of infrastructure. Transmission upgrades needed to facilitate substantial new RPS-induced renewable generation can therefore provide avenues for conventional generation and buy time for zero-emissions coal and carbon sequestrations technologies to become commercially viable. By justifying transmission expansions through RPS-induced renewable generation. they can start generating electricity to be sold over new transmission lines much faster. boasted that it could take a wind farm from groundbreaking to commercial operation in as little as three to six months. creating investor uncertainty and adding to the costs eventually passed on to ratepayers. ScienceDirect. buying time for carbon sequestration technologies to become commercially viable. All three of these strategies affect FERC's case-by-case review of rate structures based on a hypothetical capital structure for financing new transmission projects. By overcoming opposition to transmission expansions and getting new generation up and running through transmission lines faster than conventional generation. because most modern transmission systems are required to respect FERC's Open Access requirements. for instance. renewable generation may help overcome objections to transmission infrastructure.RPS AFF 1. Electricity journal 21. Florida Power and Light (FPL).18 In 2005.

profit organization committed to reforming U. The value of this “hedge benefit” increases as the percent of the RPS mandate increases.RPS AFF 1. • Uniform rules for trading renewable energy credits (RECs) save utilities $14 billion.0 billion .West North Central: $2. 2007.000 new jobs – in manufacturing.6 cents per kWh. maintenance.4 billion • Larger economies of scale decrease costs 20% to 60%.6 billion .Mountain: $5.1 billion nationwide. A 20 percent by 2020 federal RPS would decrease consumer energy bills by an average of 1.New England: $1. • Lower natural gas prices save consumers $10 to $40 billion. represent more than 2/3 of the manufacturing jobs lost in the U.Mid-Atlantic: $5. a national non. construction.S. • A national RPS creates new jobs in states with the greatest manufacturing losses. operations. Renewable resources can serve as a “hedge” against the financial risks associated with volatility in the natural gas market. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS).5 percent per year.9 billion . . a total of $49. decreasing the financial risk associated with borrowing millions of dollars to finance generators that take10 to 15 years before they start producing a single kilowatt of electricity.6 billion .3 billion . Renewable generation offsets natural gas combustion. between 2001 and 2004.newenergychoices. • Quicker lead times minimize expensive construction cost overruns.2 billion .4 billion California: $6.West South Central: $13. A 20% RPS by 2020 would create as many as 240. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC).5 percent. sales and finance – versus 75.7 billion . A national RPS by 2020 could lower construction costs for wind turbines by more than 20 percent and decrease the cost of biomass generators by nearly 60 percent. • Renewables generate 80% more jobs than equal investment in fossil fuels.Northwest: $2. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris.0 130/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Price DA—At: spending National RPS saves money and strengthens the economy Dr.000 jobs if the energy were provided by fossil fuels. a national REC trading system would increase market volume and provide a predictable rate of return for investors. for example.East North Central: $8.S. The 20 states that would gain the most manufacturing jobs from a national investment in wind energy.East South Central: $1. June.0 billion .pdf) Is a national RPS better or worse than a patchwork of state-based standards? Cost . http://www. A federal RPS with a nationwide REC trading system saves utilities $14 billion compared to an RPS without national REC trading. By eliminating geographical barriers.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.4 to 0. and save consumers in ever region billions of dollars: . shipping. Renewable technologies have quicker lead times (2 to 5 years) than conventional or nuclear plants (10 to 15 years).South Atlantic: $2. A 1 percent decrease in natural gas demand can reduce the price of natural gas by up to 2.A National RPS Lowers Energy Costs • Consumers in every region save billions. Nine of fifteen studies found that a national RPS would save consumers $10 to $40 billion in natural gas expenditures. • Higher RPS targets save utilities 0.

and tend to produce lower emissions than coal plants. natural gas prices rose by an average of 15 percent per year. Natural gas-fired units also can be turned on or off quickly.S. for example. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. to $0. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). The electricity sector’s demand for natural gas has increased from 24 percent of total natural gas consumption in 2000 to 29 percent in 2005. a national non. http://www.profit organization committed to reforming U. operation and maintenance expenses for utilities rose by nearly $26 billion ($2002). Many of the electricity generating units used for intermediate and “peaking” purposes (for example. As a result. from $0. have shorter construction and leadtimes. Between 1995 and 2005.61 Whether new drilling rights are granted or not. And plans for new peaking units in large consumer states like Texas and Florida rely overwhelmingly on natural gas. increased electricity demand in many areas has shrunk reserve margins to historically low levels. summer days) use natural gas for fuel. utilities have over-invested in gas-fired generating units. June. In 2003.RPS AFF 1. in turn caused prices to surge.newenergychoices.S. Shrinking reserve margins coupled with increased electricity demands have forced many utilities to restart “mothballed” natural gasfired generating units. as low as 9 percent.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. By 2005. which.59 And consumption of natural gas is likely to increase even further for two reasons: Lower Reserve Margins First. This is because natural gas generating units usually require a lower capital investment than nuclear or coal-fired plants.0437 per kWh. in some large states (like Texas and Florida). the tantalizing prospect of vast new sources of natural gas may lead utilities to believe that gas-fired units are safer investments than they really are.58 In some regions of the U. Congress responded recently by authorizing greater drilling rights in the Gulf of Mexico and has hinted at granting greater access to federal lands where natural gas drilling is currently offlimits. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). coal prices actually doubled between 2002 and 2004. . by 2006. The price increased nearly 7 percent each year until. a ton of coal in the same region cost close to $60 a ton.0 131/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Price DA—At: Spending Fossil fuels are so expensive any alternative would save billions Dr. they hunger for new supplies of natural gas.pdf) Fossil Fuel Prices Have Doubled From 2002 to 2005. The overbuilding of gas-fired peaking plants in the 1990’s resulted in skyrocketing demand for natural gas.57 Aggregate fossil fuel costs nearly doubled in the four years between 2000 and 2004. reserve margins across the contiguous United States had dropped to 15 percent and.S. Ninety-six percent of this increase was driven by rising fossil fuel prices. many electricity generators switched back to coal-fired peaking units.60 Prospects for New Sources Second.023 per kWh. not because parts or labor had gotten more expensive. But the switch only increased demand for coal. 2007. driving the price up. because U. giving them operational flexibility to meet short-term peak electricity demands. for example. to meet increased demand for air conditioning on hot. the cost of coal in Central Appalachia was $35 per ton..

a more predictable RPS regulatory environment decreases utility litigation and compliance costs relative to a growing web of vague and unstable state mandates.S. By expanding the amount of energy that would offset gas-fired generation. http://www. 2007. a national non. a national RPS would reduce demand on a strained and volatile natural gas market. However. In reality.0 132/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Price DA—electricity rates RPS costs would offset the high price of natural energy and decrease electricity rates Dr.pdf) Myth #3: A national RPS would cost the electricity sector Truth: When utilities say a national RPS “costs” the sector. . For policymakers. balancing utility profits with electricity prices is one of the hard decisions we elect them to make.S. they are usually assuming future profits they will not be able to recover from consumers through higher electricity rates. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). labor market). June. June. http://www. elected officials should consider that utility claims of lost profit are short-sited (and strategically unsound). a national RPS reduces the costs utilities pay in unfavorable exchange rates and foreign parts and labor (and redirects those investments to the U.newenergychoices.newenergychoices. By promoting a robust domestic manufacturing sector. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. 2007. uniform trading rules creates far more flexibility for regulated utilities and rewards utility investments on the basis of smart market strategy and not geography.RPS AFF 1. Plan saves the electricity sector money by increasing flexibility and rewarding strategy Dr. Benjamin Sovacool and Christopher Cooper (Senior Research Fellow for the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research and professor of Government and International Affairs at Virginia Tech AND founded the Network for New Energy Choices (NNEC). Renewable energy units with markedly faster lead-times than conventional and nuclear reactors speeds the cost recovery of critical transmission investments and reduces the rate increases needed to pay for new transmission.profit organization committed to reforming U.S.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final. Expanding the universe of eligible renewable resource and establishing clear.org/dev/uploads/Renewing%20America_NNEC_Final.profit organization committed to reforming U. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). a national non. RPS mandates have not significantly increased rates and a consensus of economic models predict that a national policy would generate substantial consumer savings over even the existing patchwork of state programs.pdf) Myth #2: A national RPS would increase electricity rates Truth: In most states. energy policy (Benjamin and Chris. Renewing America: The Case for Federal Leadership on a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS).

The Fair Labor Standards Act. this is a sign of strength. L. At every turn of our national development.J.65 but is surpassed by 38 other states that have set their own laws higher than the federal statute—with Connecticut offering $7. 86 Likewise.41 Federal environmental law generally allows states to enact standards stricter than federal laws as reflected in the Clean Water Act. and consumer product safety) with preambles published in the Federal Register that purported to preclude additional state action. several federal agencies issued regulations (concerning issues such as prescription drug. L. establishes a national minimum wage of $5.000 acres of fragile grassland in addition to four Wilderness Study Areas and six Areas of Critical Environmental Concern. June. indeed. because it is a question of growth. the siting and permitting of large and potentially dangerous industrial facilities had always been handled by state and local governments. AG) In areas outside of environmental regulation. It cannot. 27 Stan. implying that environmental federalism changes with the times to address pressing concerns. civil rights. The Best of Both Worlds. The Best of Both Worlds. June. makes it a new question. Envtl. Ebsco.J. Necessary but Insufficient. 85 And just one year later.80. 89 . the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) proposed new regulations asserting broad preemptive federal standards for chemical plant safety. 397.42 Environmental centralization strong now Sovacool 8 – Research Fellow in the Energy Governance Program at National University of Singapore. Federal Insecticide Fungicide and Rodenticide Act. and every successive stage of our political and economic development gives it a new aspect. As Woodrow Wilson famously wrote. 88 Such regulations evidence a clear trend towards the creation of federal ceilings that prevent state and local policymakers from holding the reins of environmental policymaking. AG) While these three attempts failed. DoE consultant on the Climate Change Technology Program (Benjamin. Government and International Affairs Professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute.15 per hour and preempts Kansas’s miserly rate of $2. in Federalism won’t spillover—single policies on the environment are compartmentalized Sovacool 8 – Research Fellow in the Energy Governance Program at National University of Singapore. for instance. The Energy Policy Act of 2005 turned this process "upside down" and reduced state and local siting authority to a commenting role with complete [*416] power handed to the Federal Regulatory Energy Commission. Government and International Affairs Professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute.” “savings clauses. 27 Stan. 83 Previously. referencing national security concerns and the public good provided by LNG facilities to the entire country over state and local interests.0 133/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 Fism DA Floor preemption alt causes Sovacool 7 (Benjamin and Jack Barkenbus. automobile.40 Other federal “floors. Thus.000 acres of the Otero Mesa in the Chihuahuan Desert to oil and gas development. the federal government has a long history of promoting minimum national standards that the states can exceed.RPS AFF 1. and more recently in the Toxic Substances Control Act. In 2005. The question of the relation of the States to the federal [*417] government is the cardinal question of our constitutional system. the Energy Policy Act of 2005 radically transformed the siting process for liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals. and no definition either of statesmen or of judges has ever quieted or decided it. be settled by the opinion of any one generation. Envtl.6. and in the area of brownfields regulation. DoE consultant on the Climate Change Technology Program (Benjamin. the balance between federal and local efforts has continually shifted. including 36.65 and Oregon $7. 397. 84 Federal lawmakers designed the change to make it easier to overcome local public opposition to the siting of such facilities. Environment 49. 87 once a state and local concern.” and “safety valves” have been established in the areas of health care insurance. despite explicit protests from New Mexico that federal action conflicted 2006. and the sentencing of hate crimes. AG) for much of the country's history. In some ways. we have been brought face to face with it. with state law and resource management plans. Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. the Bureau of Land Management opened up all but 124. drug safety.

0 134/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab .RPS AFF 1.

RECs incentivize Fershee 8 – law prof.instead of just the market for its electricity for a traditional generation facility. of renewable energy to the electricity supply mix.RPS AFF 1. These requirements are often backed with some form of penalty if compliance is not achieved. and seeks to encourage competition among renewable developers to meet the targets in a least-cost fashion. (kwh or kw) or as a percentage share of retail sales. AG) we define an RPS as a requirement that retail electricity suppliers procure a certain minimum quantity of eligible renewable energy or capacity. measured in either absolute units For the purpose of this article. and retail suppliers typically must demonstrate compliance on an annual basis. n . The Electricity Journal 20.4. 49. RPS purchase obligations generally increase over time. The Experience with Renewable Portfolio Standards in the United States. North Dakota (Joshua. J. 29 Energy L. April. RPS policies are generally designed to maintain and/or increase the contribution The RPS establishes numeric targets for renewable energy supply. Elsevier.the market for its electricity and the market for its RECs . applies those targets to retail electricity suppliers. AG) The mere existence of a national RPS would provide some incentive for all utilities to invest in renewable generation because that investment would have two markets .0 135/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 T Incentive RPS is both requirement and encouragement Wiser 7 (Ryan et al.

.0 136/136 DDI 2008 Strange & Serrano Lab A2 T In Plan increases tradable credit incentives within the entire US Wiser 7 (Ryan et al. whereas most state policies contain significant state-wide or regional limitations on REC sources.S.. The Experience with Renewable Portfolio Standards in the United States. April. AG) the federal programs would all allow tradability of recs within the entire U. proposals have also tended to assume a replacement of the federal Production Tax Credit (PTC) with a national RPS. The federal Significantly. The Electricity Journal 20. Elsevier. whereas state programs will operate with or without the federal PTC.RPS AFF 1.4.

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