- Maine Gov. Paul LePage this week delivered his State of the State address in the form of a letter to lawmakers, arguing that bad power deals and renewable subsidies have cost consumers $38 million.
- He said subsidies for solar and wind energy typically only benefit a few wealthy investors, and raise power prices for consumers, and called for more support of biomass energy, natural gas and transmission solutions.
- LePage said market power prices are around 5 cents/kWh, but state regulators had forced utilities to sign 20-year contracts for up to double that amount. "Socialists love to subsidize new wind and solar energy projects," he wrote.
Maine Gov. LePage made his annual remarks in the form of a letter this week, and in a statement said he had "chosen to forego the pomp and circumstance of a live speech so we can spend our time and energy on what truly matters: getting work done for the Maine people."
Among citizens' top priorities, he said: reducing electricity rates.
"We have dozens of letters from well-respected Maine companies telling us that high energy costs make it difficult — if not impossible — to do business here," LePage wrote. "Maine's electric rates are the 12th highest in the country and the Legislature is making it worse."
The governor criticized subsidies for renewable energy, writing: "Socialists love to subsidize new wind and solar energy projects because they think it will save the earth, but that kind of expensive and inefficient energy benefits only a few wealthy investors, and our electrical generation is already one of the cleanest in the country."
Instead, LePage called for greater support for Maine-based biomass, and imported fuel and power "We must plug into the affordable reserves of nearby natural gas and hydropower," he said. "We must be willing to transmit hydropower to the states south of us."