Nathanael Greene, director of renewable-energy policy at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said that the government should not end wind and solar subsidies in a recent story in the Tennessean.
His comments came in response to Republicans who are trying to end the subsidies, mainly Senators Lamar Alexander (TN), Jim DeMint (SC), and Mike Lee (UT).
Alexander said that wind turbines were inefficient. Greene said that while individual wind turbines don’t operate all the time, they function well as part of a larger electrical grid. And they generate electricity that’s comparable in price to coal.
Mainly, Greene noted the reality that the fossil fuel industry does not want to acknowledge: we need the subsidies, just like the fossil fuel industry did (and still claims they do) 50 years ago.
“We just can’t afford not to be a leader on clean energy,” he said. “We need those jobs and we need the clean air that comes from it.”
Wind-power advocates say the country could get up to 20 percent of its power from wind without facing any reliability problems. In 2010, 2.3 percent of the country’s electricity came from wind, according to the American Wind Energy Association.