As the Public Utility Commission’s ruling states in its 128-page decision, feed-in tariffs will “reduce the state’s fossil fuel dependence and accelerate the acquisition of renewable energy."
At What Cost?
Predictably, the cost of renewable energy – at least in the early years – is likely to exceed the traditional way of generating power through combustion of coal and oil.
PUC Commissioner Les Kondo’s dissenting view cautions against putting too much a burden on ratepayers as green energy expands. Said Kondo: “In my opinion, the amount that ratepayers are asked to bear to support more renewable energy cannot be without limits and should be one of the most important considerations in designing a (feed-in tariff) program that is reasonable, prudent and in the public interest.”
Fair enough. There obviously must be limits. Renewable energy can’t be pursued without regard for the ratepayer. But as we’re prone to say lately, this generation can be on a par with “The Greatest Generation” – our World War II predecessors. Wouldn’t that description be deserving for the generation that relegated fossil fuel to the “back burner,” as it were?
We think so, and we now look forward to the ins and outs of the new feed-in tariff system that will be become the mechanism for overcoming the throat-gripping stranglehold fossil fuel has on the Aloha State.