It's all in the details

I was startled at the tone taken in the Sun Journal editorial Jan. 16 about proposed bills that address the state’s wind power siting issues. It was a tone and language I would have expected from wind industry lobbyists and promoters. Using crass rhetoric and unfounded accusations to inflame public opinion should be beneath the Sun Journal editorial writer.

The Sun Journal admitted that the proposed legislation is still taking shape.

No specifics were cited so, apparently, there’s really little of substance on which to comment. Perhaps the Sun Journal should reserve its judgment for some future point at which the facts are known. Labeling developing legislation as “red tape” or “job-killing” is irresponsible when details cannot be produced.

Ironically, wind projects produce so few permanent jobs, the killings would go mostly unnoticed.

It wouldn’t take much imagination to assume that some of this legislation is an attempt to resolve the siting problems that have resulted in noise disputes with every project in Maine built in proximity to people. These disputes are on track to multiply should Maine continue down the path with the same pattern of wind development.

One must assume that, either the Sun Journal is unaware that there have been any problems, or is quite content to encourage permits under the same terms that produced the problems.

Better to be a part of the solution than the alternative.

Alan Michka, Lexington

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The " Day Ahead " market. A

The " Day Ahead " market. A wonderful idea conceived way back when electricity began it's reach into the homesteads of America. Those responsible in making sure the flow of electricity wasn't interrupted creating blackouts or loss of power to your outlets recognized there was always a certain amount of electricity required day in and day out. Known as the " base load " Predicting this "base load" allowed those responsible for the correct electric flow to pre-buy a day before it's need. This best method of keeping pricing from producers honest was to use a bidding process. The best way to make certain the amount promised by the producer would actually be there was to impose penalties for failure to produce. Thus people who would build plants producing electricity had to build reliable plants to avoid penalties. This is why CMP is able to proclaim " Flip the switch and we'll be there " and why wind people say " God be willing, we'll be there "

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Let's apply a business plan

Let's apply a business plan to wind power. Make them bid into the day ahead market ( The traditional mechanism used to keep rates as low as possible ). Make them guarantee a quantity and price, as all other generators are required to do. Assess penalties when guaranteed quantities are not met .( This is the traditional rules ). Remove the Production Tax Credit which gives them a 2.3 cent per kilowatt head start over others. This places the burden of being successful on them. All other businesses are required to participate on a level playing field with their competitors, why not wind ?

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To assign such large amounts

To assign such large amounts of land mass to accommodate such a feeble amount of electricity which brings higher electric costs to homeowners and businesses is of no value to anyone. Wind power needs to be eradicated before the suffering consequences take hold, not after it's too late.

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Wind power and trans. costs will cost the Sun Journal and all other businesses and citizens a lot more money. Why support something which will put you out of business?

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Tone and Tactic

Like Alan Michka, I was also stunned by the harsh tone taken by the SJ editorial staff in their "Red Tape" op-ed. Not only was the paper denigrating the legislative process by which citizens attempt to have a say in their own government, but they didn't verify their facts before giving Angus King their full support. I listened to a video recording of Mr. King again last night to make sure of my own facts, and that stack of permit application paperwork they quoted as having cost the former governor $5Million, he stated on that recorded SECD meeting as costing him $2Million. He wanted the attendees to see for themselves 'what $2Million looked like'.

Granted, he has had to make some adjustments to his permit application due to the fact that it was submitted incomplete and had to be taken back off the table, and the 'expedited wind clock' had to be stopped. He has also adjusted the number of turbines in the hopes of appeasing the Appalachian Trail Clubs, but it's a stretch to believe that those adjustments cost another $3Million.

Readers deserve to have statements like that verified. Is there not a journalistic code of conduct or ethics that comes into play?

I hope the SJ will do a better job and tone down its seemingly biased rhetoric in the future.

Karen Pease
Lexington Twp., Maine


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