Thank you to Associate Editor Anthony Westbury and this newspaper for your excellent investigative reporting on Florida Power & Light’s wind turbine proposal. It is so refreshing to see reporting that goes beyond the corporate PR releases and the politicians’ sound bites and finds the real story.
This one is about corporate tax avoidance through massive tax subsidies lobbied for by Enron, which was the largest wind developer in the United States before its demise and which pioneered the tax shelter as a commodity. FPL Group paid zero federal income tax in 2002 and 2003 despite more than $2 billion in profits, largely because of the wind projects of its wind subsidiary, FPL Energy, according to Citizens for Tax Justice.
But, now it has gotten so bold that it is proposing putting wind turbines where we don’t have sufficient winds to get close to the 30 mph required to reach the turbines’ rated capacity.
Destroying environmentally sensitive lands on Hutchinson Island and the quality of life for people in a populated area for an industrial wind plant is like burning down rain forest to build a solar farm. It violates the spirit of these tax subsidies if not the letter. FPL gets richer and the taxpayers and rate payers, as well as the local people and environment, pay the price. For more information about the enormous tax subsidies FPL will get for this project, see www.aweo.org/Schleede.html.
10 February 2008
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