If the projected boom in renewables takes place, wind and solar will play a much bigger role in your Texas energy supply. Advocates say the decreasing cost to generate renewable energy will help keep your energy bills low. However, critics warn that relying entirely on renewables could threaten grid reliability.
For energy workers or employees interested in entering the green energy industry, retraining programs could be an attractive way to make the shift. Workrise, a retraining company, started offering retraining programs in 2019. The company says that enrollment has grown from 400 workers in 2019 to 2,250 today for its renewable energy retraining programs.
If you live in a rural area, the buildout of renewables could also impact how land in your area is used. The best locations for renewables are in rural areas of west Texas, while the greatest demand for energy is in densely populated urban areas. A substantial increase in transmission lines would be needed to transport electricity to areas with high demand.
Supporters of renewables say the money offered to ranchers to allow transmission lines to pass through their land would be a new source of income for them. Meanwhile, environmentalists caution that a major transmission buildout could harm the local environment and wildlife.
Jordan Smith is a freelance journalist and translator covering issues related to energy, the environment, and politics. His work has appeared on the independent news site Opposing Views and at the Canadian Labour Institute.