Save Maumee's Response to Attack on the Environment

This is the letter to the editor in response to Terry Smith from Columbia City’s piece. (below)
Postcard from 1910

Written May 11, 2010
Indiana is 94% reliant on coal-fired power.  Yes, energy independence from the burning of fossil fuels is a must.  If rolling black outs are a fear, consider putting a solar or wind powered system on your home and receive reimbursement for your investment on next years taxes and watch the savings add up over the lifetime of the house.  In In the 1970’s Germany had concerns about energy security concerns and began research and development.

“A federal Electricity Feed Law (StrEG) was adopted in 1991 and became the most important instrument for the promotion of renewable energy in Germany during the 1990s. It obligated public utilities to purchase renewably-generated power from wind, solar, hydro, biomass and landfill gas sources, on a yearly fixed rate basis, based on utilities’ average revenue per kWh. Remuneration to wind producers was set at 90% of the average retail electricity rate; for other renewable power providers, compensation was set at 65-80%, depending on plant size, with smaller plants receiving the higher subsidy level. The StrEG effectively subsidized the operation of commercial wind installations at 4.1 Euro cents/kWh, and jump-started wind power’s market breakthrough in the 1990s.   In addition, investment in wind power installations was also subsidized by a domestic, state-owned development bank, the Deutsche Ausgleichsbank, which offered low-interest, government guaranteed loans for new wind power development.” [Paul Runci. January, 2005  Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Technical Lab Report PNWD-3526]
Pro-consumer safety & health, cooperation, job creation and increased income are things that all Americans seek; not more of the same status quo of pollution spewing into our air, seeping into our water and contaminating soil.  The OLD mantra was, “The solution to pollution is dilution.”  The population grows at an exponential rate and dilution is no longer an option.

• Wastewater guidelines for coal-fired power plants were last revised in 1982. (Great Lakes Echo, Dec. ’09)
We need to genuinely clean up pollution rather than just shift it from the air to water. U.S. citizens depend on the services that
healthy streams and rivers provide at an extremely fundamental level. Anytime carcinogens are released into air, it eventually ends up in water and in soil.

• “Hatfield’s Ferry in Pennsylvania [considered the dirtiest coal-fired power plant in USA] has violated the Clean Water Act 33 times
since 2006; paid less than $26,000 in fines, but earned $1.1 billion in the same time period. Indiana power plants have discharged
other chemicals at dangerous concentrations, but few have ever been sanctioned for those emissions, nor were their discharge
permits altered to prevent future pollution.” (NY Times, Oct. 13, 2009)

• Fish Contamination advisories being issued on Indiana rivers, streams, and lakes are for PCB’s and mercury.” (IDEM, 2010)
Draft) “People living near some power plant landfills faced a cancer risk 2,000 times higher than federal health standards.” (EPA,
2007) Coal ash sites contain harmful levels of arsenic, lead, mercury and other toxins, which can leech out slowly and contaminate
drinking water sources or flood communities as happened in TN. The EPA so far has identified 49 coal ash impounds as “high
hazard” sites, meaning that a failure at one of the facilities could lead to the loss of human life. (Earthjustice, Dec 2, ’09)

• “If all states used electric energy as efficiently as the top 10 states in the nation, we could displace 62 percent of U.S. coal-fired
output.” (Amory Lovins-Rocky Mountain Institute)

•”Particulate emissions from coal plants cost Hoosiers $5 billion/year in health costs. Alternative energy create 4-5 times more jobs
than fossil-fuel and nuclear investments.” (Citizens Action Coalition, 2009)

Wind, solar, geothermal and energy efficiency are technologies that will create jobs, and benefit the health, environment, and pocketbooks of ALL Hoosiers to TRULY re-tool America for the future!
Abigail Frost-King
Save Maumee Grassroots Organization Founder
Watershed Expert
Master Naturalist

Save Maumee’s Letter to Editor was in response to this attack on Hoosiers’ health and well-being.
Hatfield Ferry Picture - The “dirtiest” coal-fired power plant in the USA
Northeastern REMC had been cautioning its users that by 2012 customers would be experiencing rolling brownouts or blackouts because the demand for electricity was increasing an average of 3 percent per year with no increase in supply.
How is the state of Indiana addressing this issue? The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission issued a mandate to the 31 electric utilities it regulates, including CCMU and NREMC, to reduce demand by 2 percent over the next 10 years. (See Order of Commission issued in Cause No. 42693, a copy of which I have in my office for your inspection.) That means that in 2020 I will have to disconnect my house from the grid for one-half hour each day, 365 days per year. For one-half hour of each day I can have no air conditioning, no furnace, no refrigerator, no hot water, no cooking, no plugging in my electric car, etc., etc. The list of my electric appliances goes on and on.
It is time for the governor of Indiana to tell the federal government to take a flying leap, send the mandates back to Washington, cancel the mandate from his own IURC, kick the greens out of Indiana, build a clean-air coal plant and keep Indiana humming. He could use a little backbone assistance from our elected representatives, too.
Drill for American oil now! Drill for American natural gas now! Build a coal plant now!
Buy a 10-year supply of incandescent bulbs and smash GE’s dangerous mercury bulbs. Power to the people.

Columbia City

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