Saturday, May 26, 2007

Cape Wind, the subject of the recently published Cape Wind ( Co-Authored by the Providence Journal's Robert Whitcomb ) is scheduled to complete the permitting phase of the project in the summer of 2008. If all goes according to ( Cape Wind's ) plan, 130 windmills will be up and running in Nantucket Sound in 2010.

There is much opposition to the Cape Wind project. A very Un-Don Quixote like crowd, reportedly led in a low key manner by Senator Edward M. Kennedy D-Massachusetts, has been tilting at these planned windmills for years.

This project is all about saving energy. In average winds, the 130 turbines will produce three quarters of the electricity used by Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha's Vineyard. The project will create nearly 1,000 jobs, , offset the need for fossil fuels and make for cleaner air in the region, according to Cape Wind officials.

Those who are for the project claim that many of those who are against it are well to do folks, many of whom have summer homes on The Cape and The Islands. This camp also claims that many such opponents to the project are liberals who, for years, have been advocating alternative energy sources.

In other words, they're NIMBYs. People who say, " Sure, I'm for that, but Not In My Back Yard. "

I live pretty near where the Cape Wind project's 130 windmills might be contructed. On the south coast of Rhode Island. We're close - as the seagull flies, of course. If I had a boat, or a small plane, I could be there in no time flat.

I'm pretty liberal. I've been mouthing off for years about the need for alternative energy sources. What would my position be if I lived in the area that would benefit - or not, depending on your point of view - from Cape Wind? It might just be as follows:

My wife and I have four TVs, three stereo systems, seven radios, two computers, two refrigerators, two stoves, a washing machine, a dryer, a dishwasher, two microwave ovens, a garbage disposal, two ceiling fans, ten lamps, an electric toothbrush and an electric can opener.

Where exactly does this electricity come from? Out of the wall is the only answer I can give you. I don't really know, but I do know that it doesn't come from windmills. But given the number of appliances and conveniences we have in our house, I think it's only fair that I should be tilting TOWARDS and for windmills, not against them.

Where should these windmills go? I'll take one. Yes, they can construct one right here:

In my back yard.

Why? Because I have reached a point on life's nautical chart where the line representing what I have consumed and am consuming meets the line of personal responsibility. I have listened to both sides of this debate. Here's where I stand:

Smack dab in the middle of the acre on which my home sits. Let the groundbreaking begin. This is where the windmill or windmills should be planted.

How many of them should be in my back yard? Base the number on the amount of electricity my wife and I use. Take that figure and factor in the amount of yard space we have. Then start building the windmill or mills.

Right here.

Yes! In my back yard.

3 comments:

Fred said...

Between Oakland and Livermore we have a whole valley of windmills. Sometimes you would wonder. If the hills had wings. Would they fly? Oops! the old hippie coming out in me. Fred

Terrence said...

I'm so glad you were quick to comment on this one, Fred. You, my old friend, the guy with whom I shared the late 60s. Old hippies? That's debatable. But this windmill thing. It's an old idea, and a new one. Are they ugly? Maybe. Like long hair on guys was once upon a time. Me? Donna? We think the windmills are beautiful ( Far more so than telephone poles and cell phone towers )

And you mention Oakland and Livermore. California. That's where the winds of change have always come from, haven't they?

Jennifer Warner Cooper said...

We are all electricity addicts. Shamefully so.

And what's behind that socket in your wall is the region's electricity grid, that power that is produced(most of the time)by the dirty burning of coal in our aging power plants.
Funny that we are having this chat this weekend. I was chastised by my almost 13 year-old last night for not being normal. "Why can't you be like normal mothers and talk about clothes instead of power plants and fuel cells and Omega-3??" he demanded. "It's embarrassing."

My poor kids. Now I'm looking into how to fit a wind-energy field trip into our week in Eastham while they clean their damn transfer-station-type closets. Destined for the shrink's couch, they are.