Tuesday, December 22, 2009

More green on green violence

Senator Dianne Feinstein introduced legislation in Congress on Monday to protect a million acres of the Mojave Desert in California by scuttling some 13 big solar plants and wind farms planned for the region.

But before the bill to create two new Mojave national monuments has even had its first hearing, the California Democrat has largely achieved her aim. Regardless of the legislation’s fate, her opposition means that few if any power plants are likely to be built in the monument area, a complication in California’s effort to achieve its aggressive goals for renewable energy.

Alternative energy and weening ourselves off of fossil fuels is imperative and for the sake of the planet must be addressed immediately… until it doesn’t.

Setting our snark aside for a moment, Feinstein is doing the right thing as the land was donated by a nature conservancy and we’re assuming not for the purposes of being turned into a solar farm. KT has his thoughts on the matter here.

But this little urinary Olympiad between competing environmental interests is what we will see more of and with increasing frequency in the future precisely because the state of California has locked itself into a completely unrealistic goal of obtaining fully a third of its electricity by 2020 from renewable sources which for those scoring at home is just 10 years off.


Harrison said...

Kalifornia is mandated by law to get 20% (I think) of its energy from "green" sources. Even if the land hadn't been set aside you still have greenmail from Big Union not to mention the absurd cost of solar and the unreliability of wind power to deal with. Bad all around, really.



SarahB said...

sit back and watch them eat their own young

K T Cat said...

I really think the snarks miss the point. Senator Feinstein did what was right when she didn't have to. She could easily have drafted legislation to have paved the whole parcel with windmills and solar panels and been hailed as a great hero.

To use another San Diego analogy, Senator Feinstein avoided a Children's Pool / protected seal beach by doing what the donors of the land asked to be done in the first place.

She's gone a long ways towards getting my vote in the next election.

K T Cat said...

Oh yes, thanks for the link!

Road Dawg said...

Am I the only one that sees the wind farms in the desert at a beautiful thing? Where is the harm to the environment? Why is this concert of man and the elements less beautiful than the barren landscape?

Is the giza desert more beautiful without the pyramids? Is the San Francisco bay sullied by the bridge?

I believe we enhance the landscape when we do it in concert with the environment. Our oil platforms provide a wonderful habitat for marine life. They are marvelous works of technology.

Of course some areas should be left pristine, but lets not take away something excellent of its kind that is also a gift from God. Our knowlege and wisdom to enhance our lives with technology.

Dean said...

'Dawg, well said but I'm kinda with the Chinese fellow on this one. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it is my humble opinion that solar and windfarms are an eye sore.

Oh, and those windturbines aren't any friend to birds getting whacked in half by the blades.

Road Dawg said...

Large number of high capacity wind turbines killing birds is an eco-myth.

High capacity turbines are a relatively recent commercial product. Consequently, any field study of "avian mortality" done on a wind farm constructed prior to approximately the year 2000 is inappropriate for estimating bird mortality based on modern turbine designs.

The Altamont Pass California wind turbines, reportedly the site of some of the highest bird mortalities associated with any US wind farm, and using what is now an antique turbine design, are at the root of the widespread eco-myth.

Isn't extrapolating data from the worst case rate the same "bad science" as AGW?

How many birds, turtles, and squirrels get killed by cars in comparison?

So we can't put them a few miles away from the folks who find them ugly? How much flyover territory is there?

Also, is that Mandarin or Cantonese you are reading?

Dean said...

I fail to see how large spinning turbine blades are actually good for the bird population but be that as it may... those wind turbines are still god-awfully ugly.