A bill seeking to eliminate Ohio’s renewable energy mandates got its first hearing of 2014, giving voice to about a dozen people who are against wind power.
Senate Bill 34, introduced last year by Sen. Kris Jordan, R-Powell, would eliminate the renewable energy requirements enacted by legislators in 2008.
The bill would remove the requirement that by 2025 electric companies must provide 25 percent of their electricity supply from alternative energy resources. As the Ohio Legislative Service Commission noted in its just-releated fiscal note, the bill would repeal the requirement that 12.5 percent of that 25 percent must be from renewable energy.
Sen. Bill Seitz, a Republican from Cincinnati and chairman of the Senate Public Utilities Committee, denounced mandates. He brushed aside comparisons to mandates and inventions by Thomas Edison and Alexander Graham Bell. They, he said, got their inventions because of the free market.
“It was not some Stalinist government mandating, ‘You must buy my stuff,’ ” he said at the hearing.
Seitz originally had pushed Senate Bill 58 but it failed to gain enough support last year. That bill would have merely altered some of Ohio’s provisions on renewables and energy efficiency instead of removing them.
A gaggle of rural Ohioans spoke at the hearing about their dislike for the large wind turbines near or threatening to be near their homes, with most saying the amount of energy produced by the turbines is not worth the annoyance the structures cause.
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