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Create an agency to oversee energy claims

Imagine this scenario: pharmaceutical companies selling any drug they feel like, having no scientific testing to support their drug's efficacy, making any claim that's in their financial interest, and having no federal or state oversight (e.g. Food and Drug Adminsitration) regarding any of these matters.

Would that make any sense at all? Would we be healthier under that setup? Would you be surprised that bogus products would proliferate? Well, that is exactly the absurd situation we currently have with electrical energy.

The FDA exists because health is a top priority — but energy and health now significantly overlap. For instance some energy pollutants (e.g. from coal facilities) are known carcinogens. More importantly, many believe that the sum effect of energy contaminants will result in the human species demise. What trumps that?

Currently electrical energy profiteers can sell essentially any "alternative" source of energy they feel like, have no independent scientific testing to support its efficacy, and make almost any assertion that's in their financial interest. Wind power is an example.

Since this fiasco exists due to the lack of adequate oversight, the best... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

Imagine this scenario: pharmaceutical companies selling any drug they feel like, having no scientific testing to support their drug's efficacy, making any claim that's in their financial interest, and having no federal or state oversight (e.g. Food and Drug Adminsitration) regarding any of these matters.

Would that make any sense at all? Would we be healthier under that setup? Would you be surprised that bogus products would proliferate? Well, that is exactly the absurd situation we currently have with electrical energy.

The FDA exists because health is a top priority — but energy and health now significantly overlap. For instance some energy pollutants (e.g. from coal facilities) are known carcinogens. More importantly, many believe that the sum effect of energy contaminants will result in the human species demise. What trumps that?

Currently electrical energy profiteers can sell essentially any "alternative" source of energy they feel like, have no independent scientific testing to support its efficacy, and make almost any assertion that's in their financial interest. Wind power is an example.

Since this fiasco exists due to the lack of adequate oversight, the best solution is to create an Electrical Energy Administration, which would be given Food and Drug Administration-like responsibilities.

In short, companies wanting to sell an alternative that garnered financial incentives (or counted toward a Renewable Portfolio Standard), would be required to submit extensive, independent, objective scientific testing to verify that their alternative was at least equal to conventional electrical power sources.

The EEA wouldn't do testing themselves, but rather would be a panel of independent scientific experts who would evaluate the evidence presented, and approve or reject proposed alternatives based on its technical, economic and environmental merits. Additionally, the EEA would have the authority to subsequently see that there wasn't false advertising, and would be able to pull an alternative power source if new adverse information was revealed. Such an agency would be a perfect watchdog over economic-stimulus electrical energy dollars.

If done correctly (learning from FDA experiences), the economic and environmental benefits to consumers, taxpayers, ratepayers, and the country as a whole would be profound.

The alternative is to continue down a senseless street: essentially a completely unregulated Wild West bonanza, where smooth-talking lobbyists and their shills are peddling snake oil, where no claim is too outrageous, and over a trillion dollars will be sucked out of the pockets of us unsuspecting marks — with miniscule merits.


Source: http://www.watertowndailyti...

JAN 21 2009
http://www.windaction.org/posts/18702-create-an-agency-to-oversee-energy-claims
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