No Evidence That Renewable Energy Certificates Work: Trexler
There’s “absolutely no evidence” that voluntary renewable energy certificates (RECs) have increased clean energy production or cut greenhouse gas emissions—notwithstanding a new video from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that sings RECs’ praises.
“Investment decisions are being made on the basis of falling costs, renewable energy mandates, portfolio standards, and renewable energy tax incentives—not the possible future sale of RECs to voluntary buyers at a very low price,” climate risk management specialist Mark Trexler writes on GreenBiz. “Published analysis suggests that REC prices would have to be 10 to 15 times higher to make a difference in wind or solar farm investments.”
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Peer-reviewed analysis consistently shows that the voluntary REC market “has been a non-starter when it comes to incentivizing more renewable energy projects,” he says. So even for those of us who will do whatever it takes for renewables as part of a low-carbon economy, “that shouldn’t include supporting marketing schemes that don’t result in lower carbon emissions.” (h/t to Environment News Bits for pointing us to this story)