Step Back Coal, Wind Energy Is Taking Off
Wind Energy is an abundant natural resource that can propel the state of Ohio into a brighter, energy independent future. Not only does wind energy have some of the lowest environmental impact of any source of energy generation, but at two to six cents/kilowatt/hour (kWh), wind energy is increasingly becoming one of the cheapest forms of electricity, beating out coal by a substantial margin.
In 2018, new wind developments outpaced coal as a cheaper form of energy. According to a report released by Energy Innovation, renewable energy generation could take the place of 74% of coal fired energy generation facilities and by 2025, that number could reach 86%. For consumers, this means cheaper and cleaner sources of energy could be used to create the electricity that powers their daily lives. Another report release by the Department of Energy (DoE) claims that, unsubsidized prices per megawatt hour of wind energy range from $29 to $56, topping at $70. Compare these costs to the price of coal at $60 to $143 and you see a direct benefit to consumers.
Meanwhile, rising maintenance costs and increased measures set to reduce pollution have priced out coal. According to the US Energy Information Administration, coal demand for energy generation is expected to drop to its lowest point since 1978. Employment in U.S. coal production has fallen 42% since 2011, while wind turbine technician has become the second fastest growing job, narrowly beaten out by solar panel installers.
The benefits are clear. Not only is renewable energy moving at a much faster pace than coal, it is also becoming cheaper and more reliable as the technology continues to expand. In other parts of the country, electricity generated from wind turbines makes up 30% of some states power supply. Wind energy, especially, is becoming a robust and reliable source of alternative energy. Other states capitalizing on this growing enterprise are beginning to reap the rewards of a diverse energy portfolio.
The choice for Ohioans is simple: be a part of an emerging technology and industry or, or continue to let our state rely on a resource that is being phased out and leaving our state in the past.