The first southern state to enact renewable power mandates may be the first to repeal them. North Carolina Rep. Mike Hager (R-Rutherford) introduced legislation, the Affordable and Reliable Energy Act, to freeze renewable power mandates at current levels and repeal escalating future mandates. The measure would cap North Carolina’s renewable power mandate at the current three percent, eliminating higher renewable power mandates in future years. The Affordable and Reliable Energy Act would also preclude power companies from charging customers for any extra costs associated with renewable sources being included in their energy mix.
Bonner R. Cohen, a senior fellow with the National Center for Public Policy Research, examines the recent trend of state lawmakers who are calling to revise renewable energy mandates that have failed to produce meaningful results. Spurring debate over geographic limitations for building wind power farms to increased electricity costs and consumptions, Cohen gleans insights from Todd Wynn, director of the Energy, Environment, and Agriculture Task Force for the American Legislative Exchange Council:
“States all across the country are taking a second look at these mandates which foist higher-cost, intermittent electricity on the backs of ordinary citizens… North Carolina is taking a step forward by ensuring the generation of affordable and reliable energy and thus protecting low-income families that are hit hardest by costs imposed by state renewable energy mandates.”