by Jon Sanders
Director of the Center for Food, Power, and Life, Research Editor | John Locke Foundation
Below is the presentation I gave the North Carolina Energy Policy Council on May 18, 2022. It visualizes the executive summary of my report, “Big Blow: Offshore Wind Power’s Devastating Costs and Impacts on North Carolina.” Click the image for the full presentation:
The report comes amid a hurried, political push for offshore wind energy development by Pres. Joe Biden and Gov. Roy Cooper. As noted in the introduction,
Given Cooper and Biden’s stated rationale for speeding along offshore wind development and the extreme step of the federal and state governments deciding to intervene so hurriedly and dramatically in the energy sector — interventions that will affect not only competing energy providers but also households, small businesses, even large industrial firms in their roles as electricity ratepayers as well as government taxpayers — it is incumbent for policymakers and the public to ask hard questions about it. They must include:
• How much would it cost North Carolina electricity consumers to build and operate 8 GW of offshore wind energy capacity?
• How would those costs impact electricity consumers, and are they worth it?
• What is happening in North Carolina regarding climate change and pollution?
• How would offshore wind energy development affect the state’s contribution to carbon dioxide (CO2) pollution?
• Inasmuch as energy-based CO2 pollution is a problem in North Carolina, is offshore wind a viable solution?
• How is North Carolina doing regarding job creation?
• How is North Carolina doing regarding economic growth?
• How would offshore wind energy development affect job creation and economic growth in North Carolina?
• Inasmuch as job creation and economic growth are problems for North Carolina, is offshore wind energy development a viable solution?
• Are there other impacts of — or questions surrounding — offshore wind energy development worth considering, and if so, what are they?
This paper will provide an examination of those questions.
Read the report for more details.