The governor of Wisconsin, Scott Walker, is planning to eliminate the funding to the University of Wisconsin-Madison renewable energy research center.
Cutting state government funding of renewable energy is generally a good idea for several reasons. First, government involvement and interference in a market, in this case the energy market, leads to unnecessary problems and inefficiencies within that market. Second, if now is the right time to push renewable energy, then the private sector would be the one that is already funding these projects, not the state government. Finally, this is the taxpayer’s money that we are talking about here. Did a majority of Wisconsinites vote in favor of millions on renewable energy research?
In the future, when the private sector indicates which and when renewable energies are needed, we can then take another look at the university’s research center:
The research program, founded in 2009, is charged with developing technologies to convert wood chips, corn stalks and native grasses to homegrown sources of power. Along with wind, solar and hydroelectric power, bioenergy is seen as a long-term option to reduce the state’s reliance on coal, oil and natural gas.
Until that time, we will have little need to reduce our need on coal, oil and natural gas. There is an abundance of those resources out there and new technologies and findings are ever increasing that abundance.