Claims Cape Wind Will Significantly Increase Energy Costs Overblown
Cape Wind, America's first approved offshore wind farm, cannot seem to avoid controversy. Yet, the latest claims stating the wind farm will raise energy prices significantly appear to be mostly hot air.
Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, a supporter of the wind project, has said Cape Wind will increase consumer energy bills between 1.7% and 2.3% in 2013. Residential consumers will find themselves on the bottom of this scale -- montly energy bills will increase 1.7%, or $1.25. The state's biggest commercial consumers of energy will see the largest percentage increase on their monthly bills.
According to the Boston Herald, utility company National Grid estimates that a small, local grocery store will see its electric bills rise $100 per month, or $1,200 per year. A large supermarket would see its energy bill rise $500 per month, or $6,000 per year.
Morris Housen, owner of Erving Paper, a large paper mill which National Grid estimates will see its energy costs jump $114,000 per year when Cape Wind comes online said he no longer supports the project: "I used to look at Cape Wind and think, 'Oh, wind power. That's great.' I don't say that anymore. Cape Wind is going to cost us significantly more."
Mark Rodgers, Communications Director for Cape Wind, said although the commercial numbers may seem large, they must be taken in context: "Massachusetts electric consumers saw electricity prices triple (a 300% increase) over the past decade because of rising fossil fuel prices."
Rodgers further added, "Many economists expect fossil fuel prices to increase again when the global economy recovers and energy demand increases. If fossil fuel prices begin rising before 2013, Cape Wind's price rate impact will be even smaller.
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