Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Solar Industry Admits Green Energy Only Exists Thanks To Government Subsidies

By Jeffrey Dorfman

For at least the last thirty years the alternative energy industry has been claiming they are almost ready to be economically competitive with fossil fuel. Wind, solar, geothermal, and others keep begging for government subsidies to help them stay afloat until they can reach a size at which economies of scale kicks in, price per kilowatt hour drops, and then they can survive on their own. Now we are seeing this has been a blatant grab for taxpayer dollars and the subsidies were more about industry executives and shareholders getting rich than about reaching a green industry future.

For the past few years the United States has received a veritable flood of cheap Chinese solar panels, dropping costs by 99 percent over 36 years. According to the industry itself, solar installations have increased by a factor of 60 since just 2006 and for the first nine months of 2014 solar represented 32 percent of newly installed electric generating capacity.

You might think this means that solar has reached the point where it is ready to compete with fossil fuels. In fact, the industry has said so itself.

Read the rest here.


  1. The writer repeatedly calls tax credits "subsidies" and never mentions Department of Energy guaranteed "loans," grants, or the Fed. Then there's this gem:

    "Personally, I believe that the private sector is smart enough to invest in promising new technologies and wait for the profits to emerge later (see Twitter, Amazon, or Tesla for proof)."

    Where does Forbes find these people? It seems their strategy for keeping up with the internet is to pick up every person who can write nonsense on Facebook.

  2. Couldn't agree more. Rather shallow that the writer suggests abolishing these tax credits to "level the playing field" when he could completely level the field by abolishing all taxes immediately. Forbes was never a great magazine but it is a shadow of its former self.

  3. Yup, you will never be able to tell what is competitive until all taxes, incentives, subsidies, etc. are abolished for all forms of energy. Then the winners and losers will emerge.

  4. I wonder what you would find if you compared the government money the solar industry enjoys with what the oil industry. enjoys.