Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: energy


OIL: Seattle mayor and ‘kayaktivists’ are hypocritical

Re: Seattle’s Murray joins fight against drilling rigs” (TNT, 5-8).

I find the article about the “kayaktivists” laughable. It’s good to see that there are reasons the kayakers can use to load up their kayaks onto their SUVs and ply the waters. Unfortunately their message, as well as Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, reeks of hypocrisy.

To deny Royal Dutch Shell its legal right to dock a few drilling ships, and to attack Foss Marine by badgering the Port of Seattle into reconsidering Foss’ lease, is disregard for the law of lease and reeks of anarchy.

While alternative energy has

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POT: Growers reject unreliable light source

Re: “Pot producers will strain Northwest power grid” (TNT, 9-11).

So, our economy must provide extra electric power to eliminate the problem of pesky intermittent solar light that limits the profits of pot growers. They need artificial light to stimulate photosynthesis 24 hours per day in a plant that, in nature, would get that stimulus only in daytime from the sun.

Will environmentalists urge even more generous subsidies for solar power to help provide this electricity (at least in daytime on clear days) at artificially high costs borne by taxpayers?

Will indoor pot growers also resort to higher than

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ENERGY: Solar array will pay for itself

Re: “A little rain on solar power parade” (letter, 6-2).

I think the writer’s computations are wrong. Since I have a solar power array, and am going to enlarge it, I think that I might know a little bit about it.

Assuming that the array would wipe out his usage of the grid power and that the array was installed early enough to obtain the full state rebate, let’s do some math.

The original cost of $45,000 less the federal credit of $13,500 leaves $31,500 to be paid off. Assuming that the full state credit of $5,000 for this

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ENERGY: A little rain on the solar power parade

Re: “Solar energy getting brighter” (TNT, 5-28).

The article gives the impression that solar energy is a good investment for homeowners. I hate to rain on the solar parade, but here are a few figures:

My house uses about 11,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity a year. According to the article, generating this with solar would require an installation costing about $45,000. I pay $840 per year for the electricity, so it would take more than 50 years for the system to pay for itself, assuming no costs for maintenance or damage. Even with subsidies, it would take 40

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ENERGY: Don’t roll back solar incentives

Re: “Solar energy rules under attack from conservatives” (TNT, 4-21).

The article on efforts to roll back state incentives for policies that favor green energy points out that the big utilities and such “conservative” actors as the Koch brothers and Grover Norquist are behind the misleading and counterproductive campaign. They assert that net-metering solar power producers do not pay to maintain the power grid, which is clearly false.

As one homeowner with solar panels tied to the grid, I can tell you that I do pay a customer charge for that connection, beyond what I pay for electricity I

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ENERGY: Do we really want more nuclear reactors?

According to The Capitol Record: “Sen. Tim Sheldon, D-Potlatch, supported SB 5991 and said Washington is missing out on money the federal government has been investing in nuclear power in other states.

Senate Bill 5991 passed 34-15. It would have to be approved by the House of Representatives and signed by the governor before becoming law.

Nobody can convince me that nuclear anything is safe. We can’t even handle the Fukushima disaster, which is contaminating the world right now. Nor can we handle the Hanford disaster in this state. When scientists figure out how to stop this continuing disaster and

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ENERGY: Hanford’s ideal for nuclear innovation

Re: “Small, modular reactors for Hanford?” (editorial, 1-7).

Congratulations on the editorial suggesting that we look at supporting a new nuclear industry in Washington state. You are right that Hanford is an ideal location for nuclear innovators. Your facts and arguments about nuclear power being safer than coal are solid.

The only item that gave a wrong impression was the paragraph stating that conventional reactors have an Achilles’ heel of requiring pumped cooling water in an emergency, and the new smaller reactors are safer because they have passive cooling incorporated into their design.

The nuclear power industry started including

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ENERGY: Nuclear power isn’t worth the risks

Re: “Small, modular reactors for Hanford?” (editorial, 1-7).

Here they come again, the nuclear power profiteers with a new “product,” a miniaturized power plant whose primary “new” attribute is “safety.” I believe we’ve heard that promise before, and it didn’t quite pan out at Three Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima. No deaths due to radiation at Fukushima? Not yet; wait a decade or two and see.

Meanwhile, what we do have at both Chernobyl and Fukushima are “exclusion” (read dead) zones. The dead zone around Chernobyl extends to 2,600 kilometers. We might hope that the dead zone from Fukushima

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