Get government out of the way

To the editor:

I’m writing in regard to last week’s letter titled “Sustainable energy sector is booming.” Aside from the headline, there was little information about the growth of sustainable energy — only false, partisan statements intended to paint Republicans as being anti-environmental. Contrary to the author’s claim, no Republicans legislators have signed a pledge to stop any action that would address the environmental destruction caused by fossil fuels; and no one, including U.S. Rep. Jason Lewis, is on board with a “status quo” energy policy. Republicans are not against sustainable energy. They are against government mandates. They believe in a competitive marketplace for energy.

Let’s actually talk about the booming energy sector. The costs for sustainable energy are dropping to historic lows. Wal-Mart and other large corporations are using solar energy and saving money doing it. This is a very good thing! We need legislation to make this easier to do on a large scale. It’s booming, in part, because the GOP-led Congress extended incentives for clean energy production into the future for a predictable time period — five years. Legislation in the past, was often retroactive and rarely for more than two-years time. That’s not enough to give industry the predictability it wants.

After 2020, the incentives start to wind down — no economy should be based indefinitely on federal tax credits. That’s what liberals fail to grasp. They can mandate and subsidize all they want, but rarely do what’s most needed: provide competition and choice in the marketplace to insure that products develop toward what consumers really want.

With solar and wind prices dropping to historic lows and competing outright with new coal and gas on an unsubsidized basis, all that’s needed is to get rid of over-regulation and the “one-size-fits all” federal approach. Lewis understands this, and works to make sure that our new energy future aligns with what consumers want — cleaner, cheaper, and more competitive. The phone industry did not begin to thrive precisely until government got out of the way. Why would energy be any different?

Candice Reyes
Eagan