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Left In Lowell » Blog Archive » ‘Bout Time!!

Left In Lowell

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April 28, 2010

‘Bout Time!!

by at 4:29 pm.

OK, can we just build the damn things already?? LOL. Yay for Dems in state and federal government. Obama’s Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has approved Cape Wind in what I think is the final hurdle for the project. Amen and let’s get some renewable energy!

I also found some of the commentary on where other candidates have stood on Cape Wind ’til now (when you can be sure they’ll be for it).

Out of curiosity, I tried to figure out where Charlie Baker stands on Cape Wind.  Couldn’t for the life of me figure it out.  There’s nothing I could find on his website, so no help there.  Here are a couple of nuggets I picked up via the Google.

Baker, former CEO of Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare, tiptoed around the topic and refused to outright state whether he supported or opposed the Cape Wind project. He said a decision will already be finalized at the federal level before he enters office, if elected governor, therefore “the state doesn’t really matter at this point.”

Ah, a real profile in courage right there.  That one’s from last September.  Here’s a more recent one, from March:

Baker said Massachusetts residents pay the fourth-highest rates for electricity in the country, and he blasted Cape Wind for failing to say exactly how much ratepayers would save from the proposed wind energy project.
“The whole thing looks like a no-bid contract,” Baker said.

Uh, OK - so you’re against it?  But wait - MA residents pay high electricity rates.  So you’re for it?  I’m still confused.

And we also get an outline of Senator Brown’s um, interesting take from stomv in comments:

“With unemployment hovering near ten percent in Massachusetts, the Cape Wind project will jeopardize industries that are vital to the Cape’s economy, such as tourism and fishing, and will also impact aviation safety and the rights of the Native American tribes in the area. I am also skeptical about the cost-savings and job number predictions we have heard from proponents of the project,” Brown said in a statement.

So, to recap:
* Despite the fact that Cape Wind will create 1,000 construction jobs, Brown leads with 10 percent unemployment in MA.
* He’s worried about the impact on tourism, but not at all worried about the impact oil spills have on tourism?
* He’s completely ignored the reality that these will have zero impact on fishing. Good grief — if a fisherman can navigate his boat in a port, he can certainly steer clear of monopoles which are each 1/3 to 1/2 mile apart.
* Aviation safety? The studies are done — no negative impact on RADAR.
* Native American tribes? Really? I look forward to Senator Brown’s insistence of funding the Bureau of Indian Affairs to drive education, health, and employment numbers closer to the national average. I won’t hold my breath.
* He’s skeptical of the numbers which show the project will have a favorable impact. Of course he is. I’m skeptical that Scott Brown has any ability to be critical of those reports, because I’m skeptical the man has any idea of which he speaks when it comes to the economics or engineering of wind power.

*Smacks head* Are ANY of the Republicans/pseudo-independent candidates/recently elected more than empty suits?? Or do any of them care more about good policy rather than scoring political points with misdirection and lies, at least?

9 Responses to “‘Bout Time!!”

  1. Jacob Says:

    LOL, I read that it is going to produce 75% of the cape’s energy. That is simply false. I am not against the project per se, but both sides have been over severely stating their case. Republicans are playing off of fear and the democrats think everyone is stupid. What a surprise.

  2. Jacob Says:

    After reading about this, I went to the 3 candidate’s sites. Deval is the only one bringing it up as an issue - but that is because he is directly involved. The other two have the boilerplate platform planks on their issues page. It will be interesting to see if they start to cater the content to this particular issue.

  3. joe from Lowell Says:

    I have never before seen an issue that cuts across party and ideological lines like this one. Virtually the entire Massachusetts political and economic elite, from both parties, opposes this (Kerry, who’s never been very clubby, and Patrick, who isn’t from here, being the notable exceptions), while it has overwhelming support among the public at large.

  4. Right In Lowell Says:

    Through my job, I was involved in permitting and planning for a huge wind farm proposal in Maine so I developed an interest in Cape Wind as well. From what I understand, the proponents are dead wrong and it will not supply anywhere near 75% of energy for the Cape. In fact, the vast majority of the energy will go elsewhere. There will be nowhere near the jobs predicted and the environmental damage will be extensive, especially to the fishing industry. This is one of the very few subjects where I can say I agree with TeddyK. His opposition was spot on but proponents made it all about his concern for disturbing the view from the Kennedy compound which was not the case.

  5. Lynne Says:

    From what I understand, Cahill came out with statements against it, and so not to be out-righted by Cahill who is appealing to the teabagger contingent in MA (a losing proposition if I ever heard one, but have at it, makes my work easier), Baker came out around the Republican convention as being against it.

    Kerry never really came out against or for it as I understand it, not strongly. I think he didn’t want to go against Kennedy who was really against it. For Kennedy, it was ultimately NIMBY, which annoyed the hell out of me.

    I’ve seen the “75% of the Cape/Island power use” statistic before, and no one I know has refuted it. So can you please provide backup to your opposition to that number? I’m honestly curious as to if there is real proof that number is wrong. Or if some bad refutation was spewed by opponents that is suspect. But without knowing why you refute those stats I can’t make a judgment.

    Of course, if the whole state including the Cape moves towards energy efficiency, that number is very achievable I am sure. That is the crux of the matter - moving more of our production to renewables, and reducing our use of energy from efficiency, and meeting in the middle. There is a lot of low hanging fruit here, and the Cape Wind project is just one of them.

  6. nextyearishere Says:

    Although the 75% is probably the right number, it is highly unlikely that electricity would be directed to the Cape, rather just added to the grid.

    Imagine the outcry if they decided to put a less visible oil rig there, then the wind farm would seem like paradise.

  7. Lynne Says:

    RiL: Of *course* the energy is “going to go elsewhere.” That’s the point of the grid, energy goes into it and goes where directed.

    However, does it offset 75% of the Cape’s energy use, or not? Seems to me that could be calculated. It’s simple math: Cape Wind will produce X amount of power. Cape Cod uses Y amount of power. Y - X = the amount Cape Wind will offset the Cape’s power use. End of story. Good lord, people, this ain’t rocket science.

    “the environmental damage will be extensive”

    Really? You mean like the gigantic oil spill in the Gulf right now from the oil rig? That kind of extensive?? And please don’t tell me this will hurt the fishing industry. Like, OMG, I can’t skirt around a ginormous windmill with a 1/2 mile of space between it and the next one?

    “There will be nowhere near the jobs predicted”

    Prove it, all you are doing is stating an opinion here. What is true is that this will create up front construction jobs (and that number proposed seems about right), and then a few maintenance jobs. That is ALL proponents are saying, BTW.

    It will also put the company producing the wind mills to work, also, and puts MA on the map for renewable energy friendliness. Did you know that there’s a LOT of activity of companies coming here to set up R&D and production? That’s because we have a renewable friendly administration.

    Cape Wind is not a magic bullet. Cape Wind is a start, and a pretty strong one at that.

  8. joe from Lowell Says:

    “it will not supply anywhere near 75% of energy for the Cape. In fact, the vast majority of the energy will go elsewhere.”

    This is sleight of hand. The power produced will be 75% of what the Cape uses. Even if most of that power goes elsewhere, so what? We have an interconnected power grid. It’s one big pot.

    Always remember, coal plants kill people every single day in this country. If an amount of power equal to 75% of Cape Cod’s demand is supplied by coal instead of wing power, we will pay for that decision in human lives.

  9. Lynne Says:

    What, they have angel power now for renewable energy production?

    Just yankin’ yer chain, joe. :)

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