Friday, August 20, 2010

Major Local Environmental/Ethical Issue that is not being address by the public:

Off-shore wind farms project.  You might have heard by now about the New York Power Authority’s Great Lakes Offshore Wind Project (GLOW) but haven’t checked their site for details. 

I suggest before you form an opinion about the project you thoroughly look over their site.  Your opinion about this project should not be a knee-jerk reaction about seeing tall wind turbines off the shores of Lake Ontario. 

It should be about energy and Climate Change. Sure, there are issues about bird deaths, bats, noise, aesthetics, and more.  They are addressed on this site.  

Ultimately, I think this issue one of the most important environmental issues going on at the moment, but it is being marginalized because it isn’t being viewed as a major Climate Change solution for our area.  Groups are saying no to off-shore wind and no one is reminding them that this means we will be stuck with coal and other fossil fuels. 

This decision about off-shore wind farms should be framed in the press as a major ethical issue. 

Check out: New York Power Authority: What We Do "Great Lakes Offshore Wind Project (GLOW) On June 4, 2010, NYPA President Richard Kessel announced the start of a multi-phase review process for five proposals vying to construct the GLOW project or projects in the New York State waters of Lake Erie and/or Lake Ontario." - New York Power Authority: Welcome


Edith McKlveen said...

Why should I care about wind farming when there are so many more immediate and obvious things in the Rochester area that need to be addressed?

How about the incredible number of older city homes (mine is 103 years old) that need to be retrofitted in some cheap yet green way so that homeowners can do more watch their wallets exsanguinate each time they get a utility bill?

How about the incredible number of city kids who are growing up at a physical and mental disadvantage because their daily diet consists of junk food?

How about the crumbling city infrastructure?

If all the far-seeing greenies in the Rochester area who are hopping on the wind farm bandwagon would hop off and focus for ten years on these less sexy, more complicated issues, the economy, the people, and the environment of Rochester would be better served. Just my opinion.

Frank J. Regan said...

Us ‘greenies’ are both far-seeing and short-seeing. We are working on many of the various critically important problems that you name. But, like Obama says, “we can walk and chew bubble gum at the same time.”

While we are working on many of the issues you mention, we need the public to understand that Climate Change is real, happening now, and could cause our environment to collapse—making all other issues moot.

The message about the off-shore wind issue that the public doesn’t understand that when they ignore or say no to these major wind projects they condemn the rest of us to use fossil fuels.

You should care about this issue because Climate Change may trump all other issues, and just because one sees a focus on one or two segments of environmental issues doesn’t mean they aren’t all important.

Please don’t get dismissive about the importance of various environmental issues. They all are important and some put their energies here and some on other issues.

Thanks for your thoughtful and respectful response.

Frank J. Regan