The fossil fuel lobby continues its misinformation campaign to muddy the waters about wind power's success in reducing the use of fossil fuels and the harmful emissions associated with their use, according to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA).
Robert Bryce, a senior fellow at the Exxon-Mobil-funded Manhattan Institute, claims in a Forbes piece that wind energy does not reduce carbon emissions. In the article, he cites a report that was written by representatives from Bentek, a natural-gas consulting firm whose president and CEO is the chairman and director of the natural-gas committee of the fossil fuel lobby group the Independent Petroleum Association of Mountain States, AWEA states.
The Bentek report is directly contradicted by a large body of government data and numerous studies by independent grid operators conclusively showing that the emissions savings of adding wind energy to the grid are substantially larger than had previously been expected, according to AWEA.
For example, Bentek's methodology gives wind energy deployed in California and in the Pacific Northwest no credit for the emissions reductions achieved by reducing coal electricity imported from other states, AWEA adds.
In addition, Bentek does not give credit to wind energy when it allows the grid operator to store additional water behind a hydroelectric dam that is used to displace fossil generation later on, which is a common event, according to AWEA.