Green corporate welfare may be alive and well in North Carolina (as in the state mandate forcing utilities to buy renewable energy), but in Germany, the government is prepared to pull the plug on subsidies for solar energy by 2018.

The nation has pledged to produce 80 percent(!) of its energy from renewable sources by 2050, largely by phasing out nuclear power. But the switch to solar has increased consumer energy bills to the extent that subsidies comprise as much as 50 percent of the typical ratepayer’s monthly bill. According to the BBC, consumers will spend $23 billion for energy that has a market value of $4 billion.

Moreover, because the sun doesn’t always shine (and shines less often in Germany than it does in, say, the Western U.S.), solar power is not reliable and must be supplanted more and more by … coal.

From an AFP story:

Berlin “has so far invested 216 billion euros ($278 billion) in renewables and the biggest chunk went to solar, the technology which does least to ensure the power supply,” said the head of industrial group Siemens, Peter Loescher, in an interview published in the business daily Handelsblatt on Monday.

Don’t worry. Our commitment to renewable power will launch an energy revolution! And create jobs! Just pay no mind to your utility bills …