Romney spokesman Ryan Williams said the Republican candidate supports wind power. Instead of Obama’s approach Romney would promote “policies that remove regulatory barriers, support free enterprise and market-based competition, and reward technological innovation,” Williams said in an e-mail.
The Romney campaign argues that what it calls "much-ballyhooed" wind and solar jobs may actually lessen the total number of jobs available because they replace positions in dirtier, but more labor-intensive industries. It cites a controversial Spanish study that found that every renewable energy job in that country destroyed 2.2 others.
The Romney campaign said "wind energy will thrive wherever it is economically competitive, and wherever private sector competitors with far more experience than the president believe the investment will produce results."
Romney has cast Obama’s green energy push as ill-advised and wasteful, zeroing in on the federal investment in the failed solar firm Solyndra.
"In place of real energy, Obama has focused on an imaginary world where government-subsidized windmills and solar panels could power the economy," Romney wrote in a March op-ed piece published in The Columbus Dispatch in Ohio. "This vision has failed."
“Mitt Romney is a strong supporter of wind power and appreciates the industry’s extraordinary technological progress and its important contributions to America’s energy supply,” Romney campaign spokesman Ryan Williams said.
As a Republican presidential candidate, Romney has chided Obama for doling out billions of dollars to companies such as failed Solyndra LLC, saying the president is in an “imaginary world” where renewable energy fuels the economy, not traditional sources such as oil, natural gas and coal.
"Now is the time to refocus its assets in such a manner that it can become a major economic springboard for the commonwealth by focusing on job creation in the renewable energy sector," Romney said in 2003 of the state's energy trust fund that year.
"We have 250 years of coal. Why the heck wouldn't we use it?" Romney asked a crowd recently. On Tuesday, Romney met with coal miners in Bealsville, Ohio, and said the administration's strict new emissions regulations, issued in March, are forcing plants to close because it's too expensive to retrofit them.
His new running mate, Congressman Paul Ryan, shares Romney's fossil fuel favoritism. The Ryan budget passed by the House would dish out $40 billion in subsidies to oil companies over the next ten years, but would slash clean energy investments by 90 percent by 2014 -- down to just $1 billion.
"Unfortunately, under President Obama's approach of massive subsidies and handouts, the industry has lost 10,000 jobs while growth in wind power has slowed every single year of his term," said Romney spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg.
The first step will be a rational and streamlined approach to regulation, which would facilitate rapid progress in the development of our domestic reserves of oil and natural gas and allow for further investment in nuclear power.