Gov. Deal: the ugly on energy

Gov. Nathan Deal said he’s a free-enterprise person and doesn’t want to subsidize renewable energy, but he maybe doesn’t know that the state of Georgia subsidizes Georgia Power’s new nuclear plants through an indirect tax, and that fossil fuels are far more subsidized than renewable energy. That plus the chickens.

Continuing Gov. Deal: the good, the ugly, and the bad on prisons, quoting again from David Rodock’s interview with Gov. Nathan Deal in today’s VDT.

The Ugly

THE TIMES: What’s your position on alternative-energy sources? Should they be promoted and funded by the government?

DEAL: “I’m pretty much a free-enterprise person, and I think that when you start having government interfere with the market place, you have some unexpected and unintended consequences. We know that one of the major agricultural products of the state of Georgia is poultry and virtually every poultry operator will tell you that the decision by the government to subsidize corn being used for ethanol production versus corn being used for either human or livestock feed stock has distorted the price structure and has placed our poultry industry, and probably other parts of our agricultural industry, in jeopardy. I do think that there is a future for renewable energy. I hope that the federal government will adopt a more realistic approach to that. …

Government intervention in the market place like the Georgia PSC authorizing Georgia Power to pass any cost overruns for the two new nukes at Plant Vogtle on to its customers?
Georgia Power officials told state regulators they never would have started to build a new multi-billion-dollar nuclear power plant if they knew the company might be on the hook for certain potential cost overruns.
So Georgia Power itself admits that unless it had assumed the state would let it socialize its losses, it never would have proposed to build those two new nukes. And the PSC went ahead and OKed gapower passing on cost overruns to its customers. Even though the original nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle were proposed at $0.7 billion and ended up costing almost $9 billion.

Remember, Georgia Power itself says that the government authorizing the public to pay for cost overruns on the two new nukes is the deciding factor on Georgia Power building them. If that’s not government intervention, I don’t know what is. I’d call it a tax by another name.

Oh yes: fossil fuels get 12 times more subsidies than clean energy. Where’s your free enterprise now, Gov. Deal?

Next: The Bad.