The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) welcomed a report by the Department of Energy's Energy Information Administration (EIA), which shows that a national renewable portfolio standard (RPS) would reduce fuel prices for all sectors, have minimal cost impact on power prices and reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions immediately.
The EIA study, requested by Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., analyzes his proposed RPS bill, which would require that 25% of the U.S. electricity supply come from renewable generation by 2025.
EIA's analysis found that the impact on power prices would be negligible (increase less than 1% by 2030), while natural gas and coal prices would be reduced as much as 4%. Natural gas is used for one-fifth of U.S. power generation and is also used in other sectors, particularly home heating and industrial processes, meaning that cost savings would extend into many sectors of the economy as natural gas prices come down.
Over the last five years, EIA has released four other studies that come to the same conclusion: A national RPS would decrease fuel prices across all sectors and would have minimal impact on power prices, often resulting in a net savings to consumers on the order of hundreds of millions of dollars.
A 25% RPS by 2025 would reduce power sector CO2 emissions by 56 million tons, roughly 4.7% below 2005 levels, according to EIA. Currently proposed climate legislation includes emission reductions of 6% to 20% below 2005 levels by 2020.
SOURCE: American Wind Energy Association