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The Contender
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The united states federal government should offer tax incentives for offshore wind turbines

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/15/2015 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 674 times Debate No: 70127
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (9)
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round 1 is for acceptance round 2 and 3 are reserved for constructives round 4 are reserved for rebuttals and conclusionl. no forfeiting, no trolling, no stupidity.i will be arguing for the development of offshore wind with tax incentives. my opponent will argue against it. the topic is whether or not the usfg should offer tax incentives to private companies for the production of offshore wind turbines.
Debate Round No. 1


I support long term extentions of tax credits

"The federal renewable electricity production tax credit (PTC) is a per-kilowatt-hour tax credit for electricity generated by qualified energy resources and sold by the taxpayer to an unrelated person during the taxable year. 2.3"/kWh for wind, geothermal, closed-loop biomass; 1.1"/kWh for other eligible technologies. Generally applies to first 10 years of operation. "(5)

contention 1 is inherency, at our current state, we have not extended ptc(production tax credits) that incentivizes the creation wind farms in general. Wind energy in general is a rapidly growing industry that needs the US federal government support in order to expand. On the East coast of the US, offshore wind can create around 4200 GW of wind energy capacity (4).(3). logically, probably less then half of that potential can be tapped but it can still therefore solve for a lot of US energy needs at 1100 mw capacity.

contention 2 is global warming- It's well established by the global scientific community that global warming is real and caused by humans.(2) Wind turbines won't burn fossil fuels like other sources of energy like coal and gas which release co2 into our atmostphere causing global warming. Wind turbines capture wind and create electricity and therefore do not pollute the air. Global warming is destroying our world and climate. America is a global leader and if we take increased initiative and incentivize offshore wind power, other nations will follow. More industrialized nations like Germany and Britian are already taking initiative and to prevent global warming, we must attempt to solve. The US pumps out around 20% of the global co2 emission, stopping US emissions is a critical step and offshore wind can be a vehicle to eliminate our carbon footprint. Electricity is around 26% of all co2 emissions on this plant and industry accounts for another 19%. eliminating 26% of global emissions is something we must take to halt our emissions as well as connecting industry to the grid to reduce their emission rates and slow down global warming. Global warming by 2100 is going to increase from 6-8 degrees celsius according to most estimates(12). Global warming leads to ocean acidification, ecology harm, crop failures, severe weather and drought, and other major problems. IT MUST BE STOPPED!!(13)

contention 3 is jobs
This expanding industry will increase the number of Jobs in electricity industry. Spur jobs created in making turbines, the infrastructure in the turbines, scientists and engineers who explore and design these turbines, and creating maintenance crews. Jobs are vital for our economy. Global warming is killing our ecosystems and therefore vital aspects to our economy like fishing and farming so solving for global warming also benefits our economy. Job creation is great for our economy and yes it will trade off with oil and gas jobs and will spend US tax revenue doing so, but gas and oil jobs already use US government subsidies from $10-50 billion so the Federal Government won't really miss a thing(8). Offshore wind will create more jobs than offshore drilling and electricity.(9)

If it's cool, i'm adding a new contention: ocean biodiversity.

Sea creatures can live off the side of these offshore wind turbines. It has been empiraically found that having offshore wind turbines has increased the biodiversity and concentration of sea animals. Biodiversity is good because the more biodiverse an area, the less likely the ecosystem is going to become extinct.(14) by helping areas recover from areas damaged by oil spills and drilling. Biodiversity is key to ecosystems and the biosphere.

Climate change causes destrution of habitats which reduces biodiversity. Biodiversity is key to reducing co2 emissions. reduction in the capture of co2 causes more climate change. It's a coproductive cycle that keeps insensifying.[15]





According to Robet B. Hopkins and Duane Morris LLP w/ with a concentration on transportation, products liability and commercial litigation, there are NO ships available to install wind farms as most of the ships in the SQ are tied up in Asia (especially China, the leading producer of Wind Energy) and Europe. This means that the plan is impossible and cannot actually happen, thus it shouldn’t be voted on. (link below)


A.) Price of the energy on the consumer

Institute for Energy Research, 11-6-2013, "N.J. Offshore Wind Project Reveals True Cost to Taxpayer," IER,

As noted previously by the Institute for Energy Research (IER), offshore wind is a terrible investment economically. According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), offshore wind is 2.6 times more expensive than onshore wind power and is 3.4 times more expensive than power produced by a combined cycle natural gas plant. On a kilowatt hour basis, offshore wind power is estimated to cost 22.15 cents per kilowatt hour, while onshore wind is 8.66 cents per kilowatt hour, and natural gas combined cycle is only 6.56 per kilowatt hour.

price for coal is about 10 cents per Kilowatt hour thus doing the plan will raise prices of electricity more than 2 fold. Not only thins but you, the judge will have to pay for the subsidy with YOUR tax money meaning that your wallet will be double hit by this plan.

Pro said that wind energy is:
“a rapidly growing industry that needs the US federal government support in order to expand.” How exactly does that work? if you are rapidly growing industry you are successful if you require subsidies you are failing and thus require a crutch. Wind is a failing industry that is usurping money from the US economy which could be better used in education, infrastructure or hell, even onshore wind which is much cheaper and more reliable. Just look at how weak wind energy really is without the Production Tax Credit to support and subsidize it and then tell me how such an industry can truley be profitable on its own two feet:

Response:Global Warming Advantage

A.) Creation of wind turbines causes massive pollution and leads to Radioactive waste in china

IER, 10-23-2013, "Big Wind’s Dirty Little Secret: Toxic Lakes and Radioactive Waste,"

"A typical wind turbine contains more than 8,000 different components, many of which are made from steel, cast iron, and concrete. One such component are magnets made from neodymium and dysprosium, rare earth minerals mined almost exclusively in China, which controls 95 percent of the world’s supply of rare earth minerals"

It is these magnets which result in huge amounts of radioactive waste being produced in china, here is testimony from Simon Pary from the Daily Mail who went to see these magnet factories in China first hand:

"As more factories sprang up, the banks grew higher, the lake grew larger and the stench and fumes grew more overwhelming.

'It turned into a mountain that towered over us,’ says Mr Su. ‘Anything we planted just withered, then our animals started to sicken and die.’

People too began to suffer. Dalahai villagers say their teeth began to fall out, their hair turned white at unusually young ages, and they suffered from severe skin and respiratory diseases. Children were born with soft bones and cancer rates rocketed.

Official studies carried out five years ago in Dalahai village confirmed there were unusually high rates of cancer along with high rates of osteoporosis and skin and respiratory diseases. The lake’s radiation levels are ten times higher than in the surrounding countryside, the studies found."

ding to the Bulletin of Atomic Sciences, a 2 megawatt (MW) wind turbine contains about 800 pounds of neodymium and 130 pounds of dysprosium. The MIT study cited above estimates that a 2 MW wind turbine contains about 752 pounds of rare earth minerals.

To quantify this in terms of environmental damages, consider that mining one ton of rare earth minerals produces about one ton of radioactive waste, according to the Institute for the Analysis of Global Security. In 2012, the U.S. added a record 13,131 MW of wind generating capacity. That means that between 4.9 million pounds (using MIT’s estimate) and 6.1 million pounds (using the Bulletin of Atomic Science’s estimate) of rare earths were used in wind turbines installed in 2012. It also means that between 4.9 million and 6.1 million pounds of radioactive waste were created to make these wind turbines.

For perspective, America’s nuclear industry produces between 4.4 million and 5 million pounds of spent nuclear fuel each year. That means the U.S. wind industry may well have created more radioactive waste last year than our entire nuclear industry produced in spent fuel."


"Not only do rare earths create radioactive waste residue, but according to the Chinese Society for Rare Earths, one ton of calcined rare earth ore generates 9,600 to 12,000 cubic meters (339,021 to 423,776 cubic feet) of waste gas containing dust concentrate, hydrofluoric acid, sulfur dioxide, and sulfuric acid, [and] approximately 75 cubic meters (2,649 cubic feet) of acidic wastewater.”

These facts alone represent a case take-out and shows that wind turbine creation will have no better effects on the environment then other methods of energy production

B.) Methane makes warming impossible to stop

Bobby Magill, 2014
, "Arctic Methane Emissions 'Certain to Trigger Warming'," No Publication,

"As climate change melts Arctic permafrost and releases large amounts of methane into the atmosphere, it is creating a feedback loop that is "certain to trigger additional warming," according to the lead scientist of a new study investigating Arctic methane emissions.

The study released this week examined 71 wetlands across the globe and found that melting permafrost is creating wetlands known as fens, which are unexpectedly emitting large quantities of methane. Over a 100-year timeframe, methane is about 35 times as potent as a climate change-driving greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, and over 20 years, it's 84 times more potent."

As stated methane is about 35X more potent than CO2 and the world is stuck in a feedback loop that will flood the atmoshphere with methane resulting in inevitable global warming. Folks, global warming is inevitable and no human action can stop it especially a few wind turbines.


A.) Ecoomy is fine, no need for risk

We have surfaced from the recession and we are improving faster than ever now, the economy is adding a sustainable amount of jobs now and there is no reason to take any chances with risky investments in offshore wind.

B.) Offshore wind fails at bringing jobs

Telegraph View7, 6-15-2013,
"Wind power has failed to deliver what it promised," <span class="skimlinks-unlinked"></span>, <span class="skimlinks-unlinked">;

"our report shows that this industry is expensive, passes costs on to the consumer and does not create many jobs in return. Wind power is far from the panacea that its supporters claim it to be."

" The Sunday Telegraph reveals how many 'green jobs’’ the wind-power industry really generates in exchange for its generous subsidies. The figures show that for 12 months until February 2013, a little over £1.2  billion was paid out to wind farms through a consumer subsidy financed by a supplement on electricity bills. During that period, the industry employed just 12,000 people, which means that each wind-farm job cost consumers £100,000 – an astonishing figure......

Summary: offshore wind fails in all aspects

Debate Round No. 2


To answer and refute my opponents statement:

A) No ships for construction? Increasing demand for offshore wind means that an offshore wind building crew will be established by businesses who want to take advantage of this new industry. No site here, just basic capitalism at work since supply eventually meets demand. Siemens and other corporations have met the European demand, all that these corporations have to do is expand, which is a really easy thing for corporations to do. They will not create these turbines if we don't incentivize them.

B)onshore wind?

Only offshore wind can prevent climate change

ninety percent stronger and more consistent over water than - land, with higher power densities and lower shear and turbulence,13 America’s offshore resources can provide more than our current electricity use.14 Moreover, these resources are near many major cities that are home to much of the population and electricity demand thereby “reducing the need for new high-voltage transmission from the Midwest and Great Plains to serve coastal lands

so basicly, onshore wind may be cheaper now since it's already implemented, offshore wind offers greater potential energy without creating co2 emmissions.

economies of scale will make offshore wind cheaper.
Clarke et al, 9

Offshore wind farms are more expensive to build and maintain than onshore systems. According to the U.S. DOE 20% Wind Energy by 2030 report, the capital costs for offshore wind farms are estimated at $2,400/kW (in 2006 dollars) compared with $1,650/kW for land-based wind projects. Windpower Monthly notes that information on the cost of offshore wind power facilities continues to be sparse. 81 Based on limited data available from completed offshore projects, this publication estimates that a fully-installed offshore wind system will cost as much as €3,300/kW ($4,600/kW) compared with €1,700/kW ($2,400/kW) for landbased. These figures include the cost of the turbines, as well as installation and maintenance. Despite the increased costs associated with building and operating turbines in ocean and lake environments, there are several factors that make offshore wind development extremely attractive. Benefits include a more robust and consistent wind resource, and the ability to host ever-larger turbines (approaching 10 MW) and more expansive multi-turbine projects (with installed capacities of 1,000-3,000 MW). Economies of scale can offset, at least partially, the higher initial capital costs. Also, one of the most important economic benefits of wind power (both land-based and offshore) is that it reduces energy price risk. Once wind farms are operational, the fuel cost is zero (in contrast to the high price volatility of fossil fuels). Finally, for a number of states along the East Coast and Great Lakes, offshore wind offers the best—or only—opportunity to develop utility-scale renewable energy projects. The great potential benefits of offshore wind energy warrant its serious economic analysis.

Global warming/environment
The status quo and alternative to offshore wind is coal, which is bad for the enviornment
green peace 14
A large coal-burning power plant releases millions of tons of toxic chemicals into the air â€" and ultimately into our bodies â€" every year. The nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, particulate matter, mercury, and dozens of other hazardous substances that come from coal combustion can lead to not only respiratory ailments, but also cardiovascular and nervous system disorders. Many of these pollutants also make their way into our water, creating more opportunities for them to make it into our system. Coal-burning power plants emit more than 30% of the US’s global warming pollution.

Coal mining includes more fatal injuries than any other American industry. Each year, up to 36,000 Americans die as a result of air pollution from coal-fired power plants. Nearly one in ten American children has asthma. Coal-fired power plants cause 554,000 asthma attacks every year. Nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, particulate matter, mercury, and dozens of other hazardous substances that come from coal combustion can lead to not only respiratory ailments, but also cardiovascular and nervous system disorders. Cities with high concentrations of nitrogen oxides, a compound produced in coal combustion, have death rates four times higher than those with low concentrations, which suggests a potential correlation. Children are at particular risk from the mercury emissions from coal. According to Physicians for Social Responsibility, every year between 300,000 and 630,000 American children are born with blood mercury levels so high that they underperform on neurodevelopmental tests and face lifelong loss of intelligence.

Look the fact is, we can't regulate how China get's their resources but we can regulate how we use their resources. Even the the mining costs of offshore wind and coal are similar, in the end, which is more sustainable and which one is burnt away in a constant cycle.

coal ash is radioactive
scientific america 7
coal ash(emissions from coal) also emit radioactive nuclear minerals such as uranium into the atmosphere. An area around a coal factory is proven to be 100 times more radioactive then then an area near nuclear power plants.

Ok,your right about methane, this is exactly why we need to curb pollution now so we don't cross the methane artic melting and so the perpetual cycle doesn't start. We're nearing the tipping point so we need to stop now!

Rare earths disadvantage:

from your negatives source:

"While nuclear storage remains an important issue for many U.S. environmentalists, few are paying attention to the wind industry’s less efficient and less transparent use of radioactive material via rare earth mineral excavation in China. The U.S. nuclear industry employs numerous safeguards to ensure that spent nuclear fuel is stored safely."

The fact is, yes, China's rare earth mining does create radioactive waste. But China will need to be pressured by the international community in order to reduce their reactivity and reprocess or potentially store the radioactive waste. This is not a fault of the affirmative, but merely a flaw within the system of which the pro must solve for. In increasing our demand for these rare earths, we should also pressure China to get rid of this sludge.

Conclusion: If you vote pro, you are voting to solve global warming which is on the brink from methane hydrates, we avoid the rare earths disadvantage since this problem is external of the plan. This disadvantage can also be solved for with effective international policy. My plan doesn't cause radiation, but merely perpetuates a system that does. We try to end or regulate this system, which i agree with, but that doesn't mean You should vote negative based on this outside effect. If you vote neg, we will all eminently fail to solve global warming, radiation, and other impacts. Global warming needs to stop now from the negatives evidence which states that there will be artic methane emission. Using my evidence, the methane emission will only be released when a 2.5 celsius increase in global temperatures occurs, which means that we have to stop and curb emissions now or methane emissions will increase and warming will accelerate. Yes, these offshore wind turbines will be slightly costlier than coal, but coal has much more social cost then offshore wind. Global warming will lead to mass extinction.

vote pro.


I thank my opponent for the awsome round and now I will procceed to rebut the resolution. Please note that my opponent has rebuted in the summary round and although this is against the rules technically I will just assume that We are both rebutting and concluding in the same round. Let's begin:


A.) Ships

My opponent’s use of analytical argumentation is invalid. I have given quoted evidence that no ships are available and are tied up in the upcoming years which has not been refuted. The burden of proof relies completely on the Pro team, as he is proposing a plan. This means that he would have to show quoted and/or cited evidence proving the necessary amount of ships exist for hire to accomplish the plan. Simple as that.

B.) Onshore wind

The evidence that Pro provided must be dropped because the source he provided no longer works and thus I cannot check his facts. (see: Thaler 12;)

C.) Economies of scale

Again Pro’s citation doesn’t match his evidence. I went to his citation and did a F3: search for multiple parts of his speech yet there were zero results. Please drop this evidence and disregard these statements.

Global Warming

A.) Alternative is coal/ coal ash is radioactive

These points are mute. While coal may be radioactive it is not nearly as radioactive as radioactive waste from rare earth metals or regular nuclear waste. Pro has shown no evidence otherwise, and therefore we must assume that radioactive waste from rare earths is far more damaging then coal. There is a reason that we bury nuclear waste and not coal ash. Finally Pro attempts to say that we cant control what china does anyways and that increasing its demand for things that create nuclear waste will somehow convince them to change. The reason these problems exist in the first place is that China Does Not Care about its environment or its impoverished who are being ravaged by illness, as a humanitarian nation we cannot support the destruction of lives or the corruption of the Chinese corporations.

B.) Methane

The opponent has not responded to my evidence with evidence to support a counter theory and thus he concedes that it is true simply because my evidence specifically indicates that it is Too late to reverse global warming because of the methane feedback loop. He responds analytically which is honestly an irrelevant type of response being that it warrants nothing. Please flow this argument to me as well.

Conclusion: The Affirmative/Pro team has not been effective in the slightest in affirming the resolution, nor in demonstrating any real benefits of increasing tax credits to offshore wind. He has also, on multiple occasions, provided false evidence and left his burden of proof unfulfilled while also straight dropping arguments I made in my First Constructive speech. I on the other hand have effectively revealed the weakness of the offshore wind energy in its double smack effects on your wallet through high energy prices and the tax to pay for the subsidy as a whole. I have proven that doing the plan will create tons of nuclear waste, added onto the total the wind energy sector has Already created, (over 7 million tons) not even including all of the other poisonous gasses that are released in the process of rare earth creation. This will result in the death hundreds if not thousands of Chinese workers added onto the livestock and bodily damage that radiation stemmed diseases cause.

Note that the Pro team has conceded that the US economy is fine now and that there is no need to take any risks with offshore wind and thus has conceded the entire round. All of this remains true and I haven’t even re-mentioned that the plan is impossible due to the fact that no ships exist to create the turbines themselves. I believe the resolution has been properly negated, though I thank my opponent for his valiant effort in promoting renewable energies and hope that he has enjoyed this round. Thank you

-The JVN

Debate Round No. 3
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by gannon260 3 years ago
Posted by lannan13 3 years ago
Someone remind me to vote on this debate later.
Posted by gannon260 3 years ago
just got back from a debate, give me an hour, lol
Posted by TheJuniorVarsityNovice 3 years ago
haha probably, is ur round almost ready :P
Posted by gannon260 3 years ago
5 rounds i mean
Posted by gannon260 3 years ago
bro i shoulda added 3 rounds
Posted by TheJuniorVarsityNovice 3 years ago
Hey, thanks =P
Posted by gannon260 3 years ago
i love your images, lol
Posted by TheJuniorVarsityNovice 3 years ago
should be a good match
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