BOISE, Idaho -- In 2011, Idaho's Department of Commerce devoted a 37-page magazine to renewable energy, with Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter touting geothermal, wind, solar and biomass.
That publication now doubles as a grim recapitulation of projects where the lights have dimmed.
Hoku Corp.'s $400 million Pocatello solar plant has been mothballed, while Transform Solar, the startup venture of Micron Technology, is dead.
A biomass project at an Emmett sawmill failed, forcing developers to pay $200,000 in damages.
Additionally, wind and solar entrepreneurs complain Idaho policies have suffocated development.
In 2011, legislators ended a state incentive for renewables, while Idaho's electricity regulator has issued a de facto moratorium after utilities complained that renewable projects were hiking rates.
It's hardly the optimism of the 2-year-old Commerce magazine that raved about Idaho's renewables "sweet spot."