Germany and Spain are backing off on the green-energy subsidies

posted at 6:31 pm on February 17, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

For me, one of the most perplexing moments (out of the many) of President Obama’ State of the Union address last week was when he insisted that “as long as countries like China keep going all-in on clean energy, so must we.” So… because China is doing it, we must also relentlessly throw money we do not have at politically favored technologies now so awash in superfluous supply that its all they can do to keep their heads above water? China’s solar and wind industries are a hot mess of overcapacity, after the government got into the business of creating heady artificial incentives directing capital in their preferred green-energy direction — remind me of the appeal in continuing to do the same thing?

We don’t even have to look as far as China for extant examples of governments reaping the costly consequences of their prematurely sown venture socialism. Germany and Spain have for years fancied themselves forward-thinkers on the green-energy front, and have implemented a bunch of subsidies, standards, and regulations aiming to prop up what it seems environmentalists the world over have deemed to be the holy grails of renewable energy, but the fact that these technologies are not yet pragmatic nor affordable is being made especially stark by Europe’s recession. The fiscal squeeze means that put-upon consumers are rather less willing to finance politicians’ green-energy ambitions than usual, and Germany and Spain are dialing it down in the face of financial reality. The WSJ reports:

Germany subsidizes producers of renewable energy such as solar and wind power in part by imposing a surcharge on household electricity bills. As the industry has grown, demand for the subsidy increased, driving the surcharge higher. …

Fearing a voter backlash from anger over the lopsided financing of green energy, Ms. Merkel’s government on Thursday proposed putting a cap on the green-energy surcharge until the end of 2014 and then restricting any rise in the surcharge after that to no more than 2.5% a year. The government also plans to tighten exemptions, which would force more companies to pay, and achieve a cut in green subsidies of €1.8 billion ($2.42 billion). …

The Spanish parliament took a similar step on Thursday, passing a law that aims to curb rising household electricity costs by cutting aid to the renewable-energy industry. …

Among the changes in the Spanish system, the new law indexes certain subsidies and compensation to an inflation estimate that strips out the effects of energy, food commodities, and tax changes.

Spanish renewable-energy companies are highly perturbed, of course, that the government is “backing away from previous promises that it would ensure them a reasonable return on their investments,” but… shouldn’t the fact that the government has to ensure even just a reasonable return on their investments have raised some gigantic siren-accompanied red flags in the first place?

For Germany, some of these are meant to be short-term fixes as the government starts to look at comprehensive reform of their green-energy laws and taking it down on notch on all of the subsidies and mandates — forcing consumers to use particular products, before they can actually appeal to consumers on their own merits, will do that to ya.’

And we want to double down on following this expensive example, because…?


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What took Spain so long? They knew 10 years ago it was a scam. I guess like most lefty governments they were willing to waste taxpayers money to please the environmental whackos and corruption.

Blake on February 17, 2013 at 6:36 PM

Gee, subsidizing non competitive industries doesn’t work. Whodda thunk it?

AZfederalist on February 17, 2013 at 6:40 PM

Obama’s got to pay his buddies back.

CW on February 17, 2013 at 6:41 PM

The Democrats act as though subsidies are free money rather than forcing consumers to pay twice for green energy. Once in higher rates and again through their taxes.

Charlemagne on February 17, 2013 at 6:48 PM

The only people interested in pushing solar and wind are not even the enviros and the liberal politicians, but the Chinese who pay both of them. Wake up folks.

Archivarix on February 17, 2013 at 6:51 PM

“Fearing a voter backlash from anger over the lopsided financing of green energy…”

There will be no backlash…

… Did you see Marco Rubio take that sip of water?

Oh, Boy…!

/

Seven Percent Solution on February 17, 2013 at 6:56 PM

Related, the the biggest climate change march in US history happened in DC today. About 35,000 people.

People are much more fired up about stopping gun grabbers and finding jobs than they are about AGW.

juliesa on February 17, 2013 at 6:59 PM

RAT meet HOLE.

(A good motto for the Obama Administration as well. The crooked crony Zeitgeist of the Age.)

profitsbeard on February 17, 2013 at 6:59 PM

1. Obama lies.
2. Kerry lies.
3. Ms Clinton lies.
4. Mr Clinton lies.
5. Al Gore lied and lies now.
6. Earth First lies.
7. Greenpeace lies.
8. Seirra Club lies.
9. Wilderness Socity lies.
10. Michael Mann lied, lies and will lie.

http://www.wattsupwiththat.com

Facts do count still.

The whole of the commie Democrat Party is a lie based operation.

Just vote no.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:06 PM

These inane subsidies are nearly bankrupting Europe. All for climate change, and to cut back on CO2 (though these lavish wasteful subsidies probably won’t even accomplish that). But, on CO2 and climate change, I just commented on a jonova thread:
Carbon500, even without a 16 year stall, as I say, the warming has been “natural.” No quotes needed there, really. Real Science did a post headlined What Happened to the Feedbacks? An excerpt: Hansen’s theory was [that] “CO2 forcing” .. would trigger all kinds of really bad things, which would feed back and produce an exponential rise in temperature. … Instead, temperatures have flatlined for 16 years – so they have switched over to making up BS about extreme weather.
My comment: If CO2 were to heat things up, which it doesn’t, the net result would be extra water vapor, you know, clouds, which would cool things down. Right? Not according to the warmists. It’s another one of their insane upside down ideas. If fact, they maintain that for every degree of CO2 initiated warming, 3 additional degrees of water vapor induced warming would occur. Now, that would cause a whole shitload of additional CO2 to come out of the oceans (because CO2 levels change as a result of temperature changes), which would cause more heating, which would cause a lot more clouds, and so more heating, and so more CO2 coming out of the oceans, on and on, until the oceans are boiling. A runaway greenhouse effect.
But that’s not the way it is. Look at this short video that shows algor to be a buffoon in the false claims he made about CO2 in his movie: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WK_WyvfcJyg&info=GGWarmingSwindle_CO2Lag. The video shows that CO2 rises and falls as a result of temperature change, that is the clear correlation, and their is no indication that CO2 causes temperature change. And talk about feedbacks, if CO2 were both a cause and an effect of temperature change, any rise in CO2 would feed upon itself like starving piranhas, and so a long long time ago we would have had a runaway greenhouse effect … until the oceans boiled. But we haven’t had that, even though in the past CO2 rose to as high as 7100ppm. There is no way CO2 is both a cause and effect of temperature change. Is there anything wrong with my reasoning? Please inform me of what it is if you think that’s the case.

anotherJoe on February 17, 2013 at 7:09 PM

And we want to double down on following this expensive example, because…?

Because the flaming liberals in this country so want to be like their European counterparts.

GarandFan on February 17, 2013 at 7:13 PM

One way to know that all this awg, climate change etal is a lie.

ABC
CBS
CNN
CNN
PBS
MSNBC
NEW YORK TIMES
L.A. TIMES
BOSTON GLOBE
CHICAGO TRIBUME
TIME MAG.
NEWS WEEK
THE DNC

All of them tell us via their Goebbles News Netwrok that it a fact with 1,000 Michael Mann’s saying so.

GNN is not the truth.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:21 PM

And we want to double down on following this expensive example, because…?

Because the flaming liberals in this country so want to be like their European counterparts.

GarandFan on February 17, 2013 at 7:13 PM

And because climate change is just a vehicle for wealth redistribution and government control.

Curtiss on February 17, 2013 at 7:21 PM

How about this clue—if venture capitalists don’t want in, maybe the gov’t should stay away, too…real simple rule.

hillsoftx on February 17, 2013 at 7:23 PM

Alternate headline: Germany and Spain rediscover the mathematical operation known as “subtraction”.

kurtzz3 on February 17, 2013 at 7:24 PM

tset

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:26 PM

What is up with the constant need to refresh at every single thread?
This has been going on for some time. Anyone care to address this?

katy the mean old lady on February 17, 2013 at 7:27 PM

tset two

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:28 PM

Now average the tset, apply some “creative software” fudge the numbers and you will have a Michael Mann result.

tset/2

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:29 PM

katy the mean old lady

Possible McAfee or some other guard ware is in the mix.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:31 PM

One thing of note:

If you have false data in you input as above you will get false results just like Michael Mann etal did.

That and they had Al Gore grade their work….

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:32 PM

too
If you just keep posting and do not go to the top you can just keep going.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:33 PM

Four different computers? Three different locations?Three different anti virus programs?
Nope, I think HA may need some tweaking.

katy the mean old lady on February 17, 2013 at 7:34 PM

What is up with the constant need to refresh at every single thread?
This has been going on for some time. Anyone care to address this?

katy the mean old lady on February 17, 2013 at 7:27 PM

Yes, I will address it. I had to block Firefox from allowing auto-page reloads because hotair just keeps reloading without my assent. Not good. If you want to reload… reload. Take Sarah’s advice.
And for those people with limited data plans, that aren’t savvy enough to get the browser to block reloads, it’s going to needlessly cost them a lot of data. It’s pointless. It would be good if the owners of hotair could take action to stop it, but I think they can’t do anything about it, it’s part of their “WordPress” functionality that operates automatically. I would assume.

anotherJoe on February 17, 2013 at 7:34 PM

there went to the top,

It shows 12 post on this thread.

I post this and it comes up,,,

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:35 PM

Remember when GlobAl Gore was gonna have have rock concerts on every continent (including Antarctica for God’s sake) to bring awareness to AGW and protect the ice-caps ?

If this was 18,000 years ago the cry would be that soon there will not be ice on the ground in NYC during June, July, and Auguest… and the lsm, lefties, and LIVers would be pretending to have an answer to the natural long term climate patterns of the planet… $$$$$

It’s not climate control, it’s people control. It’s a cash grab and a theft of freedom. All the big AWG dogs know this… They have become evil in their crimes against humanity.

RalphyBoy on February 17, 2013 at 7:36 PM

post 25

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:36 PM

The Democrat Party is a lie based cult.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:38 PM

Check out the trading of Carbon Credits in the EU market.

It now

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:39 PM

approches ze

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:41 PM

zero

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:41 PM

keeps going back to 12 post

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 17, 2013 at 7:45 PM

The part that amuses me is how shocked – shocked! – the green energy scammers are when the government subsidies are jerked away. Surely they know full well how unsustainable their business practices are absent government money. How could they plan their lives around the promises of a politician?

Whatever the government giveth, the government can taketh away.

JoseQuinones on February 17, 2013 at 7:48 PM

“as long as countries like China keep going all-in on clean energy, so must we.”

Well, he’s proved to me he’s not a dunce, and I pretty sure Barry’s various guardians bashed him over the head enough with the “If Johnny jumped off a bridge” proverb, so, I’ll have to go with ADD.

Dusty on February 17, 2013 at 8:08 PM

…FORWARD…!!!

KOOLAID2 on February 17, 2013 at 8:26 PM

Ultimate goal of American lefties is CONTROL, CONTROL, Control. Obama wants no responsibility but desires to eliminate people HE thinks should be eliminated.

Heck, we’d be energy independent in 3-5 years if the government would get off our backs. But they’d lose control. IF we ever turn around this mess, all those govt employees will have their pensions cut b/c there is no money. Waaaaaaa

MN J on February 17, 2013 at 8:43 PM

Spanish renewable-energy companies are highly perturbed, of course, that the government is “backing away from previous promises that it would ensure them a reasonable return on their investments,”

So for the last couple years they’ve been moving to America, where the gubmint trough is still wide open.

petefrt on February 17, 2013 at 8:44 PM

Build 2 greenhouses. One filled with CO2, the other regular air. Which one is warmer?

tdarrington on February 17, 2013 at 9:15 PM

Score for the Birds…

workingclass artist on February 17, 2013 at 9:17 PM

Build 2 greenhouses. One filled with CO2, the other regular air. Which one is warmer?

tdarrington on February 17, 2013 at 9:15 PM

that was a joke right? The one with the closed windows.

WryTrvllr on February 18, 2013 at 5:06 AM

So if other countries Jump Off The Roof – The U.S. must jump off the roof?

jaydee_007 on February 18, 2013 at 6:00 AM

Build 2 greenhouses. One filled with CO2, the other regular air. Which one is warmer?

tdarrington on February 17, 2013 at 9:15 PM

that was a joke right? The one with the closed windows.

WryTrvllr on February 18, 2013 at 5:06 AM

I was going to answer- The one heated by natural gas- but yours works, too.

tdarrington on February 18, 2013 at 6:12 AM

Ugly, noisy windmills blighting the countryside.
Fields of ugly solar panels that attract dust and dirt that reduces their effectiveness.

albill on February 18, 2013 at 7:48 AM

Stuck on stupid: Pres. Downgrade is about to loan 2 billion to the Cape Wind scam! This project will increase our elec bills by tens of billions.

shanimal on February 18, 2013 at 8:28 AM

Hm. Sounds like it’s time for Obummer Inc. to sign over a few billion to Spain and Germany for “green energy” subsidies…late on a Friday evening, of course. Most of it will end up in Cayman Island bank accounts anyway.

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 18, 2013 at 12:04 PM

I like pointing out that “Every Ice age ended despite low C02 levels and every heat age ended despite high C02 levels.”

What took Spain so long? They knew 10 years ago it was a scam. I guess like most lefty governments they were willing to waste taxpayers money to please the environmental whackos and corruption.

Blake on February 17, 2013 at 6:36 PM

The Green Fascists and Red Fascists are close allies.

Slowburn on February 18, 2013 at 3:43 PM

Renewable energies are only renewable as long as the taxpayer dollars keep flowing. They will never stand on their own…wait until the maintenance bills start rolling in as these systems age…Apparentely government hacks with no understanding of science or business intend to defy gravity…with our money of course.

Nozzle on February 18, 2013 at 8:58 PM