We all know that the Wall Street Journal editorial board, including relentlessly pro-fossil-fuel and anti-clean-energy board member Stephen Moore, is no friend of renewable power. That was certainly the case with the newspaper's recent editorial, "California's Coming Green-outs," which is filled with one untruth and distortion after another. Fortunately, Michael R. Peevey, President of the California Public Utilities Commission, has done a superb job rebutting this "absurd" Wall Street Journal editorial. Here's an excerpt:
The main message of your editorial “California’s Coming Green-Outs”(March 30) is absurd. No one with knowledge of California’s energy supply is predicting rolling blackouts due to California’s clean energy policies. The truth is that the California Public Utilities Commission and the California Independent System Operator have identified a need for different types of resources that can turn on and off quickly to match solar and wind resources three to five years from now, but we are working on developing those tools now.
Your editorial cites a 2011 report that said most renewable contracts filed by utilities in California were approved. You don’t mention that since then renewable prices have gone down dramatically and today the CPUC is approving many contracts that are close to parity with conventional generation. Forecasts for the next five years show that rate increases will roughly track inflation, and renewable investment isn’t the main driver of the increases.