First, there are the subsidies. According to the Energy Information Administration, in 2007, total subsidies for the oil-and-gas sector amounted to about $1.9 billion per year, or about 3 cents per million British thermal units (BTU) of energy produced. Recall that the production tax credit is 2.2 cents per kilowatt-hour, which is $6.44 per million BTU of energy produced. (One kilowatt-hour of electricity contains 3,412 BTU.) Therefore, on a raw, per-unit-of-energy-produced basis, subsidies to the wind sector are more than 200 times as great as those given to the oil-and-gas sector. Put another way, the subsidy for 1 million BTUs of wind energy is nearly two times the market price of the same amount of natural gas: On Wednesday the spot price of natural gas was about $3.40 per million BTUs.
We can also calculate the subsidies using data from the Congressional Budget Office. The CBO estimates that tax preferences for renewable-electricity production in 2011 totaled $1.4 billion. The vast majority of that money went to the wind-energy sector, which produces about 60 times as much electricity as the solar-energy sector. (Note that the $1.4 billion figure does not include any of the $3.25 billion in tax-free grants that were given to the wind-energy sector by the Treasury Department under section 1603 of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act between 2009 and 2011.)
In 2011, according to the BP Statistical Review, all non-hydro renewable-energy production in the U.S. averaged 909,000 barrels of oil equivalent (BOE) per day. Therefore, according to the CBO and BP data, the tax preferences for wind energy totaled about $1,540 per BOE per day.
How does that compare with oil and gas? The CBO found that tax preferences for the fossil-fuel sector totaled $2.5 billion in 2011. That year, domestic oil-and-gas production totaled 19.736 million BOE per day. (Oil accounted for 7.8 million BOE per day and natural gas accounted for nearly 11.9 million.) These numbers imply that the tax preferences for the oil-and-gas sector cost taxpayers about $127 per BOE per day.
So at $1,540 per BOE per day, the wind sector is getting subsidies that are about twelve times as great as the tax preferences provided to the oil-and-gas sector.