In geek-speak, the records and rankings that are endlessly discussed on opinion pages and cable TV are not robust to arbitrary decisions, but the long term trend is. Perhaps reporters and bloggers should stop making a big fuss out of meaningless statistics and focus on what really matters: the trend.
While some fossil fuel companies claim they support renewable energy, actions behind the scenes tell a different story. Many are backing front groups to create barriers for the deployment of renewables. These front groups serve as a critical component, adding a supposed "independent" voice to state energy policy debates.
If ALEC were an honest broker, it would recommend market-based solutions, like the Republican-inspired, acid rain cap-and-trade program championed by President George H.W. Bush. But that's not likely going to happen, because doing so would alienate its fossil fuel industry and trade association members.