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View promotion with skepticism

I agree with Paul Williamson’s call (Aug. 9) for a conversation centered on reasonable discussion and supportive evidence with regard to industrial wind power development on Maine’s mountaintops. Unfortunately, he adds neither.

The “recent report from the European Union,” to which Williamson alludes, is, in fact, the work of European wind industry trade groups, much like his own, whose single purpose is to promote wind turbine development. Contrary to his illusory assertion, the cited paper offered no evidence that wind had supplanted the use of nuclear or coal fuels. In fact, reduced use of these fuels is largely a result of the normal and predictable decommissioning of aging generators.

Neither he, nor the report, revealed that tremendous natural gas replacement capacity has been deployed in Europe during the last decade. Perhaps, that was no accidental omission. At present, gas, which burns much cleaner and with a fraction of the emissions of coal, is one of the greater threats to industry goals for wind development.

Given the space, I could reveal the sales pitch slant of Williamson’s points, each slyly obscured by a facade of legitimacy, as in the example above.

He opines for a more substantive conversation, and does not deliver that for which he opines. The members list of his organization, Maine Wind Industry Initiative, is a who’s who of interests that would profit handsomely from the industrialization of Maine’s treasured mountains.

We would be well-served to view their promotional pitches with a due amount of skepticism.