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Hype and governance

The importance of finding reliable, clean, and economic solutions to our energy questions is paramount to our economy, our welfare, and our way of life. There are good ideas that are being discussed and others that will likely not see the light of day. Before you become a tool to advance the political agenda of the Carbon Coalition, make sure you know what their agenda is and what the footprint of that agenda might be in your town and our region five and 10 years out. You might find the Coalition has not thoroughly vetted its plan. It is best to know that now, before our political leaders feel pressed and grasp at anything to look like they're "just doing something".

I read with interest the Courier's front-page article on local activities by the Carbon Coalition. ("Carbon Coalition: thinking locally and acting globally", Nov 29). The Coalition is a relative newcomer to New Hampshire advocacy, but it's staffed by some of the same individuals who have fueled New Hampshire's environmental movement for years. Dissatisfied with the speed at which state and federal government has responded to its message on climate change, the organization has now engaged the centuries-old March town meeting for its activist purposes. They, and their charter organizations, have figured out that their strength may be in our numbers.

Those seeking to make climate change the "biggest political issue the nation has faced since World War II" are demanding immediate and decisive action be taken by our leaders or else something dire and alarming will befall the world.

How many times have we heard, "I wish they'd do something about climate change," or "I don't care what they do, just do something"? Of late, every natural event once accepted as Mother Nature at work, is now blamed on global warming. Katrina, tsunamis, ice storms, floods, Indian summer, and now a year of no hurricanes have all been blamed on a... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

I read with interest the Courier's front-page article on local activities by the Carbon Coalition. ("Carbon Coalition: thinking locally and acting globally", Nov 29). The Coalition is a relative newcomer to New Hampshire advocacy, but it's staffed by some of the same individuals who have fueled New Hampshire's environmental movement for years. Dissatisfied with the speed at which state and federal government has responded to its message on climate change, the organization has now engaged the centuries-old March town meeting for its activist purposes. They, and their charter organizations, have figured out that their strength may be in our numbers.
 
Those seeking to make climate change the "biggest political issue the nation has faced since World War II" are demanding immediate and decisive action be taken by our leaders or else something dire and alarming will befall the world.
 
How many times have we heard, "I wish they'd do something about climate change," or "I don't care what they do, just do something"? Of late, every natural event once accepted as Mother Nature at work, is now blamed on global warming. Katrina, tsunamis, ice storms, floods, Indian summer, and now a year of no hurricanes have all been blamed on a single degree Celsius increase in the earth's temperature over the last 100+ years?
 
I do not mean to minimize the question of climate change. And I welcome and strongly urge the democratic process and the public's engagement on policy. That's the beauty of this country. But the sense of urgency and pending doom are what I find most ominous.
 
Reactive political activism designed to take action, and take it now, is dangerous. And I question tactics that insert urgency, and possible hysteria into the governmental process, a process deliberately designed to be slow, methodical, multi-sided and fact-based. Governmental policy, provoked by hysteria can be catastrophic particularly as pertains to energy policy, which is complex, and impacting at all levels.
 
Mr. Charlie Cook, a resident of Lincoln, was cited in the Courier's article as asking whether the "resolution or article gives the town the responsibility to follow up monetarily." Good question! While the town of Lincoln will not have to raise money, there could be real financial costs associated with the policies the Carbon Coalition is pressing, costs that will be borne by everyone in New Hampshire and New England.
 
Many of the same people behind the Carbon Coalition are responsible for New Hampshire having some of the highest electricity costs in the country. Their push for natural gas in New England over the past 10 years, in order to bring clean technology to the area failed to comprehend the shortages of natural gas and the resulting high fuel prices. Their continuing fight against clean, base load power technologies in the region to be replaced with wind power and other alternative sources fails to comprehend the uncertainties and obvious limitations of some renewable generation. For example, wind energy does not generate electricity in sync with human activities; our highest demand for electricity generation is the very time when the winds do not blow (i.e. hot summer afternoons)!
 
Further, they brush aside numbers that question how many renewable generators would be needed to match the output of our existing installed facilities, facilities which produce one-hundred times the capacity any renewable facility could provide.
 
I wonder if anyone in Lincoln, or the other towns who met with the Coalition, asked what the Coalition had in mind for energy policy in this current political season? Perhaps they wish for the U.S. to sign on to the Kyoto Agreement.
 
The effectiveness of Kyoto is still a hotly debated international issue (for example, see: www.windaction.org/opinions/1781).
 
Local town government many not be the best venue for debating international politics.
 
The State of New Hampshire, the New England Region, and the Federal Government are all working hard on the issue of energy policy.
 
The importance of finding reliable, clean, and economic solutions to our energy questions is paramount to our economy, our welfare, and our way of life.
 
There are good ideas that are being discussed and others that will likely not see the light of day.
 
Before you become a tool to advance the political agenda of the Carbon Coalition, make sure you know what their agenda is and what the footprint of that agenda might be in your town and our region five and 10 years out.
 
You might find the Coalition has not thoroughly vetted its plan. It is best to know that now, before our political leaders feel pressed and grasp at anything to look like they're "just doing something".


Source: http://www.courier-littleto...

DEC 13 2006
https://www.windaction.org/posts/6315-hype-and-governance
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