Hydro Forced To Take A Dive For Wind
We’re being pretty stupid as a society when two renewable energy sources fight each other instead of fighting fossil fuel. The point of installing renewable capacity is to reduce carbon emissions, not to take advantage of tax breaks, however nice that is. And the point of power administrations and utilities is to provide reliable power at as low a cost as possible. For-profit administrations have to make money as well.
Federal regulators ruled against the Bonneville Power Administration last winter for choosing hydroelectric power over wind and other energy sources during high river flows in 2011 that resulted from above-normal late-spring runoff (Earthtechling). BPA serves the Pacific Northwest and the huge amount of hydroelectric in this region makes Washington State the leader in providing renewable energy. 70% of the state’s electricity needs comes from renewables, mostly hydro with several percent from wind. Coal and gas provide only about 16%, and nuclear about 8%.