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What price will we pay for power?

September 21, 2008
(Page 3 of 4)

And do they really think that it is power companies' responsibility to develop alternative energy sources? I am all for protecting the environment, but we cannot and should not hold the power companies responsible for doing the impossible, or investing their meager profits in alternative-energy research. Leave that to the speculative investors and researchers, perhaps subsidized by federal tax incentives, as the oil industry is today.

- R. W. Rose




It is impossible to realistically judge the necessity of the new power transmission lines from the information available in the press today.

I have not seen any realistic estimates on growth of demand or conservation capabilities. All sides are releasing information with rosy scenarios or doomsday forecast.

I can't trust anyone's information that is out there to form an opinion from.

- Tom Niederberger




Blackouts may well be in our future if something constructive is not done. However, I also think that energy producers use that comment as a fear tactic to goad us into letting them do exactly as they want to do regardless of the consequences to environment and the health of people who may live near the proposed lines. What about aesthetics?

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This beautiful land of ours has already undergone a lot of ugliness makeovers. How many more of those can we stand without falling into despair and depression? It's past time for the power companies to get up off their big, fat excuses and get cracking on producing some alternative sources of energy, fast. They should have been working on alternative sources all along. They need to stop thinking about their own bottom line and stop sleeping at the switch.

- Rachel T. Bowers




Several years ago, I took a group of agriculture teachers from Washington County into the local power company for a day of in-service and exchange with company representatives. What I heard in the opening remarks by company officials was that acid rain was a phenomena of nature that occurs from time to time and is not the result of coal-fired power plants.

This blatant denial of what was common knowledge in the environmental community amazed me at the time, but I learned two things that morning. First, the power brokers in the energy business are not ashamed to stretch the truth when it serves their purposes. And second, they are not very creative in disguising excuses for the damage their industry has caused the environment.

Today's example, of "a natural phenomena, which occurs from time to time," is still being used by some in the energy business to dismiss global warming and to label those who warn of it as alarmists. In today's political environment, utility companies are accustomed to getting their way. Therefore, the public must continue to ask the hard questions. Traditional transmission corridors will remain for all of our lifetimes.

We in America must remember that our utility companies are not at fault for trying to provide and deliver energy through traditional means to a growing populace. The fault lies with all of us as citizens for not investigating and demanding alternative ways to generate electricity over the years.

Big corporate entities tend to look out for big corporate entities and not necessarily for those whom they serve or the environment they effect.

However, European countries have been generating electricity by burning their trash and waste for decades, eliminating the need for long transmission lines. So, let us hope that both sides in this matter find middle ground and agree to work together to reach a time when needs and behaviors in this country work in conjunction with nature and not to its detriment.

- Bud Ingersoll




I live in Morgan County, W.Va., not far from an existing proposed route for the PATH transmission line. If power companies use existing routes, I do not see a problem. But we must be realistic - so long as orchard and farm owners keep selling out to developers, more power will be needed for the region.

As for alternative energy sources, I feel that this is just as much the responsibility of the individual home- and business owners asit is the electric companies.

Homeowners can install solar panels, wind, or geothermal generators and then sell surplus electricity to the electric companies. This way alternative sources pay for themselves. It's all a matter of priorities. Forget the new vehicle this year - invest in alternative energy for your home and/or business, because, after all, you are responsible for your piece of the planet!

- L. A. Funkhouser




We can't let the lights go out, period. I don't know what the alternatives are, what they cost and what the time frame is.

- Steve Kay




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