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California is Going Germany’s Way With Failed Energy Policies

image credit: California Energy
Benjamin Roussey's picture
Freelance Writer Arizona

Benjamin Roussey is from Sacramento, CA but now lives in Arizona. His bachelor’s degree is from CSUS (1999) where he was on a baseball pitching scholarship and he completed 4 years in the US...

  • Member since 2016
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  • Jun 26, 2019

Germany and California both have ambitious energy and climate goals. But Germany is struggling to meet those targets and its citizens are paying some of the highest electricity prices in the industrialized world. Will California learn from Germany’s failed experience? That’s a critical question.

James Bushnell, economics professor at the University of California at Davis, said that there are a lot of parallels between Germany and California. Both have been leaders and both have experienced a period of energy cost increases, which are causing worries of a pending backlash. That backlash has probably hit Germany more because they started their irrational energy policies before California.

Germany – A Pioneer in Energy Programs

With the intention to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transform its energy sector, German leaders adopted a vast program called Energiewende eight years ago. The country has been the fore bearer of change in the European Union.

California is in the US what Germany is in the European Union. California leads the nation in the number of rooftop solar installations, and mandates, like the establishment of the country’s most aggressive Renewable Portfolio Standard but all of this is based on fake science and is helping erode the middle class of the so-called Golden State. California has been losing its middle class for years now because of bad policies.

California is ran by oligarchs.

Failed Programs

Germany has witnessed a series of setbacks on its path to become cleaner and greener.

There has been no decrease in greenhouse gas emissions in Germany for the last nine years and emissions from the transportation sector have not fallen since 1990. Hilarious!

California’s Rising Energy Prices

According to the US Energy Information Administration, Californians pay an average of 15.23 cents per kilowatt-hour for electricity. This is about 50 percent higher than the average state in the US.

The question now is whether electricity consumers in California will end up paying rates similar to those in Germany. Bushnell of UC Davis is worried about the same.

As the state adds to its ambitious renewable energy policies, the retail price of electricity that California customers pay is rising.

Effects of Rising Electricity Costs

Bushnell worries that as the state gets closer to 100 percent carbon free economy, electricity costs will rise. These could go so high that consumers will be driven away from electric power. This is not favorable because the state’s efforts to electrify the transportation and heating sectors are just taking off.

Bushnell said that California is trying to squeeze every ounce of carbon out of the electric sector, irrespective of the cost (irrespective of anyone who is not a rich tech titan or rich celebrity). When this state hits a big cost spike, it will have to think about how it buys renewables.

Arizona and states not run by environmentalists are doing well; states ran by environmentalists are struggling and as seen by Germany, will hit a serious fork in the road.

Personally, I am very happy I don’t live in Sacramento anymore. I don’t miss the violence and living in an expensive state with a poor quality of life.

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