Travis Fisher, an economist at the American Energy Alliance who is from North Carolina, writes in The Charlotte Observer on freezing the state’s renewable energy portfolio standards (RPS) mandate:

From 2007 to 2013 U.S. production of natural gas from shale formations grew an amazing 783 percent, thanks to innovations such as the combination of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing.

In contrast, a mandate on electricity from solar power and poultry waste is not a solution – it’s meddlesome and costly.

The right path forward is to repeal the energy mandate and unlock true innovation in energy.

North Carolina should embrace energy sources that flourish under the market test, not mandate expensive sources that fail it.

Fisher, who is a friend and former colleague, is right to focus on costs and innovation. That approach puts least-cost energy and North Carolina’s captive electricity consumers at the forefront of the state’s energy policy, as they should be.

Electricity is a basic household necessity, not something to fiddle around with just because we can say all this public support creates jobs. Some people actually have to choose between electricity use and food, and there’s no reason to make that choice harder just so you can say you, a politician dealing out public monies and favors, “created jobs.”

P.S. Please hand out smelling salts to any renewable energy industry type reading this; their lobbyists say they have extremely delicate constitutions that get upset over any perceived threat to disrupt any of that public money and favoritism.