Regarding David Cash’s visit to the Berkshires promoting the governor’s plan to reduce greenhouse gases by 25 percent ( “Green plan is a boost”, May 24) he is certainly on track about the role conservation should play in both boosting economic activity and addressing climate woes.
The article, unfortunately, advances the misplaced notion that wind power in the Berkshires will somehow contribute significantly to this effort.
Only 7 percent of the 25 percent reduction is greenhouse gases is slated to be achieved with renewable energy. Of that 7 percent, only 2 percent is planned to be from renewables generated in state. This includes solar, biomass, hydro, and offshore wind, as well as onshore wind. All “technically feasible” land based wind sites that the wind siting bill addresses, if entirely developed, would reduce GHG emissions by 2 3 of 1 percent.
Even this, as it turns out, is a wildly optimistic figure as it ignores many factors such as the carbon footprint associated with manufacturing and installing 50 miles of ridgeline wind plants that would be required to meet this goal. By comparison, we could offset this much CO2 emissions simply by eliminating under-inflated tires in this state.
Given that we have limited resources and need to act quickly it is imperative that we focus on cost-effective means of abating climate change.
A recent report issued by EOEEA addresses this topic in depth. It reveals wind power is
does not meet this test. A wide variety of conservation oriented measures, do, however.
It is good to see state officials promoting them.
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