Thursday, August 14, 2003
Re: So soon we forget
It’s good to see the Herald appreciates the pending cost of managing greenhouse gas emissions (“Kyoto’s cost will be large”, 03/08/14, A8).
The Herald indicates the $1 billion plan elements announced Tuesday this week are “federal government first-round proposals. Not quite. The federal government totals its Kyoto induced expenditures from 1997 to 2002 (see http://www.climatechange.gc.ca) at $1.7 billion. Thus, we are now at $2.7 billion and just starting to count.
The Herald also notes that environmental groups lament the lack of support for wind and solar generated power in this latest announcement. Support for those energy sources has already been initiated under climate change plans. How much more subsidy can they absorb?
Just three weeks ago we were reading about the ineffectiveness of the $ 24 million Renewable Energy Deployment Initiative which is targeted to support solar energy and biomass combustion. The 25% subsidy it has provided since 1997 is apparently not enough to induce the use of solar energy. That should not really be a surprise, but the federal government is conducting a probe to see what went wrong.
The federal Wind Power Production Incentive of 2001 provides a subsidy of about one cent per kilowatt hour for up to 1000 MW of wind power capacity. The wind turbines sprouting around us suggest that is getting some attention from wind power producers.
As time goes on, and we expect renewable energy to reliably supply a significant fraction of our energy needs, we will find it an exorbitantly expensive means of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.