J. Tierney: Why shouldn't we use the wind?

As individuals, the people in this state don’t seem to be any more stupid than the average bear, but as a group, Mainers appear to be as dumb as a brick.

The March 29 Sun Journal reported that three legislative hearing rooms were packed with folks telling the Legislature why wind should not be used to make electricity. Never mind that the people of Maine own the wind within three miles of the shore and that there is more than enough wind there to make all of the nine billion kilowatts of electricity that the people of this state use each year.

That is like each person turning down a gift of 10,000 barrels of oil each year, minus the pollution. Is that dumb or what?

Both Sen. Angus King and Rep. Chellie Pingree use the wind to generate electricity for their families. Why don’t the rest of us do it? Maybe we’re waiting for them to do it for us.

Don’t hold your breath.

Instead of 500 people going to Augusta to say why wind should not be used to generate electricity, wouldn’t it be smarter to send 300,000 to say why wind should be used?

Jim Tierney, Auburn

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Comments

Tom Powell's picture

The dog ate your homework on energy policy

It is shocking that former state attorney general, McGill educated lawyer, and law instructor at Columbia University could make such uneducated and uninformed statements about energy policy as James Tierney did in his letter to your media outlet on 4/6. While he obviously studied hard to pass the bar exam the dog must have ate his homework for his energy policy class. From his comments, it is obvious he knows absolutely nothing about wind or national energy policy.
As for making a global statement about us local Mainers being dumb, suffice it to say I encourage you to not quit your day at Columbia as your political future in this state is toast. None of even us "dumb" Mainers would vote for you after that comment. Wow, just unbelievable that a person of your character and intellect has been in a position to pass legal judgements on Maine people.
Tom Powell
Mexco

Norman Mitchell's picture

Some so Called Mainers appear to be as dumb as a brick.

I would agree both King and Pingree are from away I would like to see Maine run by Mainers ! What was it about the wind law that you like the unconstitutional aspect . 4/18/08 Governor signed Ch. 661 into law, effective immediately instead of 90 days after Legislative adjournment because it was an emergency bill. Under the Maine constitution Article IV. Part Third. Legislative Power. An emergency bill shall include only such measures as are immediately necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health or safety. did you get that ? Or This fact 85 percent of Maine’s air pollution come from elsewhere , keeping this in mind we only control 15% of our air quality and what small % of pollution is from electric generation ? Remember this was the reason smog controls were not placed on autos in Maine as pollution is from out of state ! Wind law was created under many false hoods if you look at our in state pollution facts you will see we can do nothing within our boarders to control air pollution in Maine when 85% comes from out of state said the EPA ! Maine has reduced its air toxic emissions over 251% since 1988. and reduced co2 86% since 1990 yet we still suffer from out of state pollution if you want to help fight the pollution in Maine it must be done at the federal level . So what was the premise of the wind law ? as we were and are below the goals set in the wind law ! Just a bit of info do some research take a look at
Fourth Biennial Report on Progress toward Greenhouse Gas Reduction Goals Maine Department of Environmental Protection. Scam for our tax dollars that all

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

"Never mind that the people

"Never mind that the people of Maine own the wind within three miles of the shore and that there is more than enough wind there to make all of the nine billion kilowatts of electricity that the people of this state use each year."
Even if that were true, if past behavior is any indicator of future behavior, the people of Maine would never see an ounce of monetary rate relief from these 9 billion wind generated KW's. They'd be sold to the 'grid' and end up being consumed elsewhere. Just another empty promise for the benefit of a few with money to invest; they'll get the elevator while the ratepayers will once again get the shaft.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

“..more than enough wind

“..more than enough wind there to make all of the nine billion kilowatts of electricity..”
So Jimmy, how much territory is necessary to extract 9 Billion kilowatts of power.

Perhaps there are other factors as to why wind makes up less than 7% of overall electricity production in the US.

Also, since fewer and fewer electricity plants us oil fired furnaces to produce steam to turn turbines, the barrels of oil saved analogy makes less and less sense.

Wind energy production is not a consistent source of electricity. Natural gas fired plant are efficient in that regards as generators can be brought on/off line to meet changing power demands.

Perhaps wind power will make sense the day we run dry of the alternatives, but not now.

Alice Barnett's picture

out to lunch

I do not think King Angus can buy wind in Maine's electricity generating system....supposedly the little amount of WIND electricity produced is sold to Massachusetts.

Maine has over 4200 megawatts of electric generating capacity, yet load (need) is only 1000 to 1500 MW.

Ask Angus how he got his substation built for his Roxbury project.

How come the power lines were upgraded in the Rumford area first?

How come your electric bill went up 19.6% for upgrading Angus' wind projects.

Tom Powell's picture

the money trail

..there you go Alice, that's the right trail to follow. Keep the cost of this ridiculous energy source for Maine on the forefront.

Dan McKay's picture

We need to get our esteemed

We need to get our esteemed State Government to listen to you, Mr. Tierney. If we own the wind, then, given enough taxpayer money, we shall control the wind, commanding it to blow straight and narrow into each and every wind turbine placed within Maine's Air Space.

MICHAEL LEBLANC's picture

What would be the carbon footprint ...

... of those 300,000 advocates? Are they all going to hike to the state house?

I agree that King and Pingree generate much more than enough wind. Why do those two do it? Because they each have plenty of their own money to toss around, and they want to force the rest of us to "invest" money we don't have in an energy source that might, might, return our investment in 20 years or so.

Individually Maine politicians are smart. God knows they tell us often enough. But as a group, they're as dumb as lumber.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Your comparison is unfair to

Your comparison is unfair to trees, Mike. 0O:-)

MARK GRAVEL's picture

No, I say they are pretty

No, I say they are pretty dump individually too, especially when it comes to spending our money. Don’t forget that politicians benefit handsomely from the dollar they get from lobbyist.

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