Why Do We Hold Renewable Energy to a Different Standard than Fossil Fuels & Nuclear Energy

By Center for Energy Sustainability and Economics:

Now that renewables are receiving some of the same incentives that fossil fuels have enjoyed for nearly one hundred years, we’re suddenly being inundated with calls for a purely “free-market” approach to energy development from politicians on the right and companies concerned about the growth of clean energy.

Their arguments make for good sound bites. But if we take a look at the history of energy development in the U.S., it’s very clear that we’ve never had a truly “free” market. In fact, all of the technologies that dominate our energy system today were given special incentives by the government in order to get them to commercial scale.

According to a recent report from the venture capital firm DBL Investors, the U.S. coal, oil, gas, and nuclear industries have cumulatively taken in more than $630 billion in tax credits, land grants, R&D programs, and direct investments from the government… Read more

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