Monday, October 17, 2011

Should government subsidize renewable energy?

Robert Semple Jr. of the NY Times say yes.


Amanda Styers said...

I do not think that we should let the failure of one company dictate how the government should spend its money. People want renewable energy and the government should help the pubic by providing that resource. They should subsidize renewable and encourage more people and companies to create and use renewable resources.
Amanda Styers

AdamForEnglish said...

Government subsidies of renewable energy are fine when properly directed and everything about the initial loans to Solyndra seem to check out. Solyndra had a great niche in their silicon-free solar energy technology during the global silicon shortage. As the demand for silicon grew, firms naturally expanded operations through new plant construction. This took some time causing the price of silicon to firm in the short term, and as new plants came online the price quickly dropped causing Solyndra's competitive advantage to vanish.

It is also important to note that Solyndra received multiple millions in private investment prior to seeking and receiving a government loan during a period when private banks were tightening lending standards substantially.

Chase Bennett said...

In order to truly promote the development of renewable energy the government needs to reallocate oil, coal and gas subsidies to solar and wind. Renewable energies have little chance of competing when the fossil fuel industry receives all the aid that it currently does. Move the subsidies, let the "real" prices shine through and then the renewables will have a chance.

Andrew Webber said...

If people are worried about the government investing more money into renewable energy because of the state of the economy, and becasue of the state of debt that our country is in and all that then how about they just stop funding dirty energy? Give clean energy an equal chance to dirty energy and make them both work with just good old sales. A company shouldn't need to rely on the government's aid to survive, thats the opposite of the purpose of a company. But the government is, in a way, hurting the renewable energy market by providing the non renewable market with so much money.

Julia Coppin said...

As much as a government should subsidize renewable energy, they also know that they are so dependent on oil based technologies that they can ultimately hurt their economy. That is they would change to renewable alternatives that will cost big money and will still need oil to keep their country running therefore having two major bills to pay. Governments should seek to replace the simple and easiest things first letting technology continue to advance for oil based technologies to slowly but surely become lesser and lesser and if possible extinct.

Kafi Gumbs said...

Due to the fact that almost all of the worlds Governments are becoming more aware and concerned about green house gas emissions, and knowing that renewable energy mechanisms are fairly new, and can help reduce green house gas emissions and reduce their dependence on oil they should subsidize renewable energy devices.

Furthermore, Governments need to assist their citizens in moving towards renewable energy, because they are are fairly new technologies and are therefore more expensive than older energy inefficient mechanism that are not environmentally friendly. i strongly believe that Governments should subsidize renewable energy to make it more affordable for countries citizens. In the end they would have contributed to reducing harmful emissions, and saving on energy cost.

To illustrate the outcomes of Government subsidizing renewable energy, we can take a look at the outcome in Barbados.

Barbados residents that purchase solar water heaters receives 100% tax rebates. The reason for the Government subsidizing this renewable energy amenity was to promote lower instillation cost, make solar water heaters more affordable and reduce the islands dependence on imported oil and reduce carbon emissions.

The promulgamation of the Fiscal Incentives Act of 1974 also gave the islands users of solar water heaters 20% off on import duties for the raw materials of solar water heaters, this helped lower the instillation cost by 5-10%. There are 32,000 solar water heaters installed in Barbados and studies have found that this saves around 4,000kwh of oil fired electricity generation per year. This keeps a total of about 97,000tCO2 out of the atmosphere.

We therefore see that with assistance from Government for renewable energy investments, there are some positive outcomes.

Kafi Gumbs

Tom Connolly said...

I absolutely think the government should subsidize renewable energy to get the ball moving on the manufacturing and purchasing of renewable energy sourced and goods. Of course, I believe that the subsidies should be limited in some respects so that it encourages producers of renewable energy to find more productive, efficient, and cheaper technologies. I get this opinion because I look at how the government subsidized so many oil and gas companies for many years and how that led to the lack of innovation in the industry to create more efficient technologies.

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