CRS Adds Senior Fellow

Conservatives for Responsible Stewardship (CRS) is pleased to announce the addition of Mark Richardson to its Senior Fellows program. Mark, whose professional life has provided him with diverse connections to the energy industry, brings to CRS a wealth of expertise in energy-related tax policy, financing and royalties. For much of his life he managed a dual career, both as an engineer in operations for Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway, and as a farmer. An oil and gas royalty owner, Mark has direct experience with the traditional energy and related policies, but he has also become a strong advocate of wind energy and other energy resources that support the farm economy in Kansas. He held the position of Plains States Coordinator for the Red State Renewable Alliance, and has been a member of both the Reno County (KS) Wind Energy Task Force and the Heartland Alliance for Regional Transmission. Mark has authored numerous articles and op-eds about energy policy, and has lobbied the Kansas Legislature and the state’s congressional delegation in support of policies that do not unfairly discriminate against renewable energy sources. He has a Masters degree of Business Administration with an emphasis on economics of regulated industries from Wichita State University and a Bachelor of Science degree in education from Pittsburg State University. Living in Hutchinson, Kansas, Mark is a lifelong Republican and an active member of the community. He has served as a board member for the Hutchinson (KS) Historic Fox Theatre, Reno County (KS) Kansas Farm Bureau, El Cap Credit Union, Reno County (KS) Planning and Zoning Commission, Envista Credit Union Advisory Board, and the Hutchinson...

Despite Attacks, Wind & Solar Outpace Coal & Gas

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) recently released a report showing that wind and solar power generation outpaced coal and gas in 2014. Wind generation increased by more than any other power source and solar generation more than doubled. Equally impressive,  wind energy is dominating new power generation going forward. Out of 20 gigawatts in electricity generating capacity utilities expect to add to the grid in 2015, wind energy will account for 9.8 gigawatts–more than any other energy source. Natural gas comes in second with 6.3 gigawatts and solar third with 2.2 gigawatts. Those three sources combined account for 91 percent of the added capacity. Perhaps this explains the current “war on renewables” being waged by groups like Americans for Prosperity (AFP) and the American Energy Alliance. These groups, which have close ties to the fossil fuel conglomerate Koch Industries, are in print and on the airwaves constantly demonizing wind and solar. Even worse, they do this under the pretense of championing conservatism and defending the free-market—not as the special interests shills they really are. Their attacks often center on the premise that wind and solar are somehow inferior to fossil fuels and that these energy sources only exist because they are being propped up by government subsidies. Nothing could be further from the truth. As the EIA data shows, utilities are more and more choosing wind and solar over coal and gas. Why? Because diversifying their fuel mix with wind and solar helps keep their fuel costs down and their electricity rates more stable. Fossil fuel prices are very volatile—as anyone who drives a car or truck can attest. They can...