Dunleavy Plan to Increase Renewable Energy Is Wrong

Dunleavy Plan to Increase Renewable Energy Is Wrong

February 11, 2022

When Alaska’s Governor Mike Dunleavy announced this week that Alaska would work toward having 80% of its Fairbanks to Homer corridor source its energy from renewables by 2040, there was a quick reaction from green activists to embrace the idea.  The rest of the state has reacted differently.

The plan, as outlined in the Governor’s proposed legislation, would gradually increase renewable energy production, and require billions of dollars in investment for wind, solar and tidal.

The Governor’s intentions are understandable.  He cites rising LNG prices and calls for energy to be affordable, but what is driving up prices is a diminished supply. And this is the fault of Washington, DC, and an administration thousands of miles away that has not stepped foot on Alaskan soil.  I have personally witnessed hundreds of millions of dollars of equipment on the north slope sitting idle waiting for DC to give the go-ahead. 

Fossil fuels are not causing Alaska’s energy problem.  A lack of them is.   

Had the Governor called for billions in investment to bring more of Alaska’s natural gas to market, the eco-left would be angry.  And rightfully so.  But, unlike the wind and solar industries, we don’t need taxpayer dollars; we just need the government to get out of the way. 

Alaska is dark just about half the year making solar almost useless.  For weeks we have no wind and then 100+ mph storms hit at varying times making wind turbines unreliable.  Last winter’s storms in Texas and last month’s winter blast in New England exposed reliability issues with wind power – in that it doesn’t work when it is bitterly cold, icy, or too windy.

Governor Dunleavy need look no further than states which have pushed these renewable mandates ahead of Alaska: California, New York, New Mexico.  Every one of them has seen utility prices increase.  In 2018 a campaign financed by billionaire eco-warrior Tom Steyer forced Michigan to impose similar renewable energy mandates.  This past December the state’s utility company hiked rates an additional 8.8%.  This is without a doubt Alaska’s future.  

Alaska is blessed with an abundance of a reliable source of energy.  We have the potential to produce enough natural gas to power our state at a low cost and export to the lower 48 and allied nations turning a profit.  The Governor should be spending his time working for this goal, not focusing on taxpayer subsidies for an unreliable and expensive alternative.