A Series of Letters

April 9th, 2013 - posted by Michael Miller

In The Style of the Great Fanny Burney (13 June 1752 – 6 January 1840)!

March 28, 2013

James H. Bodurtha’s March 22 letter “Oil sheiks must celebrate our offshore wind fixation” should have been titled “Oil CEOs tickled by offshore wind delays.”

Offshore wind is being embraced around the globe as a viable renewable energy source. Dong Energy in Denmark recently announced plans for an 8-megawatt offshore turbine to help drive down costs per megawatt. Europe installed 369 turbines in 2012.

This is a growing and innovative industry, and Massachusetts has an opportunity to be the first state in the nation to host an offshore wind farm. And in terms of our tax dollars at work, it’s important to remember the government handouts given to the fossil fuel industry. Traditional fossil fuels receive over $70 billion in subsidies, compared with $12.2 billion for renewables. The nuclear industry has received billions of dollars of loan guarantees. The Union of Concerned Scientists issued a report in 2009 saying that this could result in the American taxpayers being on the hook for $360 billion to $1.6 trillion.

We need to change the way we produce and consume energy in our country. I will be proud the day Cape Wind’s turbines start spinning.

Sarah Cote

Forestdale

March 28, 2013

The media have been awash with news of Cape Wind’s manufacturing and financing plans.

Jim Gordon, Cape Wind’s president, seems to have missed the message behind the Buy American movement, which is dedicated to restoring and maintaining the long-term economic prosperity of our country by promoting and facilitating the practice of buying American.

Cape Wind is sending manufacturing jobs overseas, while, at the same time, it is seeking a loan guarantee from the federal government — a loan guarantee that would be backed by hard-earned American taxpayer dollars.

The turbines will not be built by General Electric, but by Siemens, a German company. Moreover, the steel foundations that were supposed to be built in Massachusetts are now going to a European manufacturer. Apparently, Cape Wind expects Americans to subsidize overseas jobs, in spite of the fact that we are dealing with one fiscal crisis after another.

As if this isn’t enough, Cape Wind has now announced that it is seeking financing through the Bank of Tokyo.

Renewable energy projects are hailed as good for America. Not this one!

Richard F. Mullin

South Dennis

March 28, 2013

I would like to weigh in on the controversial Cape Wind project and remind my fellow Massachusetts residents that we need to consider the “economics” of the project. The issue of “our money” has been swept under the rug.

  • Jim Gordon, the Beacon Hill multimillionaire “promoter” of Cape Wind, promised us that “free wind” would lower our utility bills. Now he tells us it will increase our electric bills.
  • Mr. Gordon said wind energy would be economical in the future, especially given that natural gas prices would skyrocket. But natural gas prices are “depressed,” and experts are telling us “clean natural gas” is the fuel of the future.
  • In the recent Cape Wind/Mass Tank dispute, Cape Wind now wants the Department of Energy to use our federal tax dollars to “guarantee” billions of dollars of debt so Cape Wind can send our Massachusetts jobs to Germany.

Let me get this one straight. We are supposed to be excited about Cape Wind because it will raise our tax bills, raise our electric bills and send our jobs to Germany? I thought we’re supposed to use “our” tax dollars to invest in America and create American jobs.

Ted Palashis

West Hyannisport

March 28, 2013

James Bodurtha sounds off on Cape Wind in his March 22 letter. Here are a few facts to clear things up.

  • Fracking for oil and gas is not environmentally safe.
  • Gasification of coal is years away and may never be cost-effective.
  • The government is not guaranteeing all of Cape Wind’s loans. A loan from the Department of Energy would be about $300 million. A nuclear plant in Georgia is applying for $8 billion from the same program. We can’t agree on a place to dispose of high-level nuclear waste.
  • The contracts with NStar and National Grid are already done, so the federal loan has no effect on those agreements.
  • Over Cape Wind’s 20-year life, ratepayers will save $4 billion due to the price-suppression effect, because Cape Wind has no fuel cost and can bid zero in the spot market.
  • Cape Wind is rated at 468 megawatts, and 15.3 jobs will be created per megawatt. That works out to 7,500 jobs for this project.
  • Oil companies are given $4 billion per year in taxpayer subsidies. The top five oil companies made a profit last quarter of $145 billion.

I look forward to the many economic and environmental benefits of Cape Wind.

Carl K. Borchert

Nantucket

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