GOP senator slams federal electric grid study as anti-wind

GOP senator slams federal electric grid study as anti-wind
© Greg Nash

Sen. Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyGrassley announces reelection bid The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Alibaba - Democrats argue price before policy amid scramble Congress facing shutdown, debt crisis with no plan B MORE (R-Iowa) is criticizing the Department of Energy’s (DOE) electric grid security study, saying it is designed to be critical of wind energy.

Grassley, a staunch defender of wind power and self-styled father of its federal tax credit, told Energy Secretary Rick Perry in a Wednesday letter that he’s concerned about the research Perry ordered to determine if certain renewable energy are hurting baseload power sources like coal and nuclear.

“I’m concerned that a hastily developed study, which appears to pre-determine that variable, renewable sources such as wind have undermined grid reliability, will not be viewed as credible, relevant or worthy of valuable taxpayer resources,” Grassley wrote.


He noted that the National Renewable Energy Laboratory already completed a study on the subject and it took two years, far longer than the two months Perry ordered his staff to take for the research.

“As the former governor of Texas, you surely have an appreciation for the enormous economic contributions wind energy is already providing in many parts of the country,” Grassley said.

Groups representing wind, solar and other intermittent renewable energy technologies have harshly criticized the study, saying it is stacked against them.

Democrats have also slammed the process, saying it is set up to be biased toward coal and nuclear power.

But associations representing biomass and hydropower electricity, along with those representing baseload sources, have applauded the research.

Perry has asked that the study be completed by mid-June.