With regard to the article “Shumlin: Six proposed solar projects ‘too big’”:
I’m puzzled by Gov. Peter Shumlin’s points on renewable energy.
1. Additional large-scale projects, including solar and wind, would pose problems for the electrical grid. Yet huge flawed projects such as the wind project proposed for Windham and Grafton in southern Vermont (30 towers, 5,000-acre tract in a densely populated area, steep slopes, flood-prone area) are known to have Shumlin’s blessing.
2. The governor blames unclear thinking for over-building large-scale projects. (“They build it before they think clearly,” the governor said.) Yet communities can’t contribute to a process of “clear thinking” because of the governor’s siting policy, which effectively excludes all but the developers.
3. The governor knows how to distribute wind projects throughout the state. (The Northeast Kingdom “has made their contribution to Vermont by hosting two significant wind projects,” according to Shumlin.) Too bad for folks living in a place he thinks should make the next “contribution,” regardless of suitability of the site or community input.
4. The governor believes that 1 in 20 Vermonters have jobs because of renewable energy projects. (Opposing a two-year moratorium on renewable energy projects, he said: “You’re saying to 1 in 20 Vermonters, ‘Your job, gone.’”) Are these 1 in 20 Vermonters permanently employed at above minimum wage? Are their jobs sustainable?
5. New renewable energy projects in Vermont will stop global climate change. “Anyone who puts a moratorium on renewable energy in Vermont is … saying to our kids and grandkids, ‘Good luck, climate change doesn’t matter.’” The governor’s own people don’t agree with him on this question, denying that Vermont’s energy plans for the future are meant to stop global warming.
The governor is clumsily using deceptive communication to suppress people’s ability to make rational judgment. Propaganda, in short.