by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Yes, we’re going to make energy more expensive.
That’s Joe Biden’s closing message for 2022. “We’re going to be shutting these [coal] plants down all across America and having wind and solar,” Biden told a crowd in deep blue California on Friday, arguing that it was “cheaper” to generate electricity from wind and solar.
Is it? In California, which not only leads the nation in “clean energy” production but is leading the rest of us into rolling blackouts, residents pay 24.62 cents per kilowatt-hour for energy, around double the national average. There are only three other states where residents fork 20 or more cents over, the isolated Hawaii and Alaska and the frack-banning New York. The price of a gallon of gas in California is around two dollars over the national average, at $5.458. In Texas, it’s $3.173.
The president also forgot to mention that affordable natural gas, propelled by technological efficiencies like fracking, is as much a reason for the struggles of coal.
After West Virginia’s Joe Manchin groused about Biden’s denigration of his state’s top industry , the White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, “walked back” the comments, contending that the president’s “remarks yesterday have been twisted to suggest a meaning that was not intended; he regrets it if anyone hearing these remarks took offense.”
How they were distorted, she did not say. The statement stresses that the president understands that “the men and women of coal country built this nation” but that, yes, we must shut down the coal industry — as well as the oil and gas production. Biden is sorry that you’re offended. “Our goal as a nation is to combat climate change and increase our energy security by producing clean and efficient American energy,” the statement falsely goes on to say. Wind and solar, both victims to vagaries of the weather, aren’t, by any definition, “efficient.”