Wednesday, April 28, 2010


After years of opposition and red tape, Cape Wind gets federal approval!

When I lived in Massachusetts (2006-08), this huge offshore wind power project kept hitting one stumbling block after another; it looked like it would take decades to get approved. But it kept doggedly leaping over each hurdle placed in its path.

For the record, I am a big proponent of renewable energy sources. I've worked in the industry, I promote it still, I even have a PV module charging batteries out back as I write this. I do think renewables should come after a massive, nationwide effort and investment in conservation and efficiency—the cheapest energy there is. Yet given growing demand (until we do get serious about cons & eff), I would prefer wind power to coal or nat gas power plants. Regardless one's views on anthropogenic global climate change, the local- and regional-scale environmental and health damage are clear and severe. We must supplant fossil energy with clean, sustainable, renewable energy (i.e., sun-based: solar and wind, even "geothermal"—both deep thermal and ground-source heat pumps).

Also for the record, I do not relish the notion of scenic panoramas littered with man's machines—even wind turbines. But I'll take an obstruction to my views over one in my lungs, and I'll take pylons in the Bay over mercury compounds in the water I drink and the fish I eat.

I believe each one of us must make a clear mental connection between our daily activities and their effects on the environment at large—even environments hundreds of miles away. That connection must be intellectual as well as deeply personal: emotional and even spiritual. Our state of blissful disconnection is leading us down the road of ruin. Don't wait for technology to save you: save yourself and your planet with smart choices today!

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