We need to keep these wind power subsidies, says... Karl Rove?

I had to double check to be sure, but Backwards Day was on on January 31st, so that doesn’t explain this. Nor do I see any reports of the web site of Business Week being hacked. And as far as I know, Rove doesn’t even have a Linkedin account to phish, so I’m thinking this story is legit. Let’s hear from the man himself.

Renewal of federal tax credits for wind energy can save U.S. jobs and reduce dependence on foreign oil, according to Karl Rove, an adviser to former President George W. Bush.

“We’ve got a growing economy that’s increasing energy consumption and wind energy should be part of the solution,” Rove said today on a panel at a wind conference in Atlanta. Extending the so-called production tax credit “should be a priority.”

A bill to extend through 2016 the 2.2-cent-a-kilowatt-hour credit for electricity produced by wind turbines, biomass, geothermal and landfill-gas plants has stalled in congress along with about 100 other expiring tax-related incentives.

It seems an odd time to take a stand like this, particularly given all the coverage on this subject in recent days. As Paul Driessen discovered, tens of billions in subsidies have still not resulted in wind power contributing more than 3% of the nations demands on the electrical grid. Further, wind farms tend to produce the most energy when demand is lowest and the least when demand maxes out.

Further, the more we look into this, the more it looks like a huge cash cow and boondoggle, as Goldman Sachs has set up an entire investment plan to cash in on the government largesse. Some people have a nose for taxpayer dollars when the spigots are opened up and this should be a warning sign at a minimum.

Nobody is saying we can’t have wind energy, but the development phase of this technology should be over by now. If you can put up a wind farm, produce useful power and make money doing so, then God bless. Have at it! But if it’s not profitable by now, I’m not sure what huge breakthrough we’re waiting for which justifies continuing to prop up development on the taxpayer’s dime.