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Liberals hate subsidies to oil companies. They feel it's unfair practice to support an industry that is literally killing the world.
Further, it's a complete waste of money because they money is going to corporations that make billions in profits and should instead be given to good, happy companies like wind energy.
Except that, as the numbers are broken down, wind energy gets much more favorable treatment than does oil. The problem is that it just isn't an efficient source. From National Review:
We can also calculate the subsidies using data from the Congressional Budget Office. The CBO estimates that tax preferences for renewable-electricity production in 2011 totaled $1.4 billion. The vast majority of that money went to the wind-energy sector, which produces about 60 times as much electricity as the solar-energy sector. (Note that the $1.4 billion figure does not include any of the $3.25 billion in tax-free grants that were given to the wind-energy sector by the Treasury Department under section 1603 of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act between 2009 and 2011.)
In 2011, according to the BP Statistical Review, all non-hydro renewable-energy production in the U.S. averaged 909,000 barrels of oil equivalent (BOE) per day. Therefore, according to the CBO and BP data, the tax preferences for wind energy totaled about $1,540 per BOE per day.
How does that compare with oil and gas? The CBO found that tax preferences for the fossil-fuel sector totaled $2.5 billion in 2011. That year, domestic oil-and-gas production totaled 19.736 million BOE per day. (Oil accounted for 7.8 million BOE per day and natural gas accounted for nearly 11.9 million.) These numbers imply that the tax preferences for the oil-and-gas sector cost taxpayers about $127 per BOE per day.
So at $1,540 per BOE per day, the wind sector is getting subsidies that are about twelve times as great as the tax preferences provided to the oil-and-gas sector.
Lobbyists for renewable energy, along with their allies at the Sierra Club and other environmental groups, like to point out that the oil-and-gas sector gets favorable tax treatment. The numbers above show that that’s true. But there are no requirements for consumers to buy gasoline or natural gas. And that takes us to the issue of mandates.
Up until last year, the corn-ethanol industry benefited from both a mandate and a subsidy. Congress ended the corn-ethanol subsidy, but the mandate remains. That mandate requires gasoline retailers to blend an increasing volume of corn ethanol into their fuel. And the ethanol industry continues to get support for the mandate from the Obama administration despite objections from a wide variety of lobby groups over the effect that the corn-ethanol requirement has on food prices.
Meanwhile, the wind industry continues to enjoy both a subsidy and a mandate. (Twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia are subject to mandates for renewable-electricity production, which will likely mean higher-priced electricity for as many as 220 million Americans.) If there are any other industries that have a similar arrangement, I haven’t heard of them.
The point is that, despite the efforts of governemnt, wind power isn't cutting it in America because it doesn't work on the scale we need.