California’s Blackouts Display Kamala’s Energy Policy

California’s Blackouts Display Kamala’s Energy Policy

August 19, 2020

This past week, California has been experiencing its first intentional rolling blackouts since the state’s 2001 energy crisis. The energy demand is only increasing, too, and is likely to exceed the record reached in 2006. The situation would be even worse if the state wasn’t importing significant amounts of energy from coal- and gas-fired powerplants in neighboring states. For Democrats, this couldn’t be happening at a worse time.

Much has been made of California Sen. Kamala Harris’ energy policies after her nomination as the Democratic vice-presidential candidate. Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has been moving farther and farther left in terms of energy policy as the campaign trail has gone on, and many have speculated that Harris will only exacerbate that process. California’s current situation is a sign of what’s to come if her eco-left platform becomes a reality.

Chuck DeVore, vice president at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, wrote in The Federalist:

By comparison, Harris’ policies are a radical departure, and, as can be seen in California, fail when confronted with the real world. Harris partnered with New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on the multi-trillion-dollar Green New Deal, an energy plan so ambitious it envisioned a continental network of government-run high-speed trains while grounding America’s commercial air fleet.

The Green New Deal has long been criticized as an ideological signaling exercise – a proposal that’s meant to garner attention but has no basis in reality. California has come closer to implementing this sweeping, radical proposal than anywhere else. As a result, Californians pay 61% above the national average for electricity. And, for this drastically increased price, they get rolling blackouts. A Power The Future study found that, if implemented at a national level, it would cost a typical household at least $74,000 in its first year and more than $40,000 every year thereafter.

In the meantime, California is making “cooling centers” available to vulnerable populations (so much for the ban on mass gatherings to prevent COVID transmission) while grid operators are seeking every watt of power they can get their hands on to avoid more widespread blackouts.

If California is any indication, one thing is clear: under a Biden-Harris administration, all of the above issues would only be intensified on a national scale.