Balancing The Anti-Wind, Pro-Coal Lobbies: The Pennsylvania PennFuture Example


Pennsylvania's PennFuture organization has released a "one-pager" to help balance the advocacy claims of pro-coal and anti-wind power forces. Fossil fuel lobbyists can easily bring their talking points in to State legislators which, until now, have had little access to information on the advantages of wind power. Rather than have each state have to 're-invent the turbine,' as energy bills come up for discussion, we thought we'd pass along the PennFuture list - just to keep the information valves open. Go to the website of PennFuture here.

View the full letter sent to the Pennsylvania State Legislature by John Hanger, president and CEO of PennFuture, here. (pdf file) Selected points of comparison are listed below.

Via:: Business Wire. Image credit:: PennFuture.

* More than 1,000 Pennsylvanians are already employed in Pennsylvania’s wind industry. Gamesa, a wind turbine manufacturer, shortly will be hiring another 300 Pennsylvanians. That is just the beginning of the many good paying jobs wind power is bringing now to Pennsylvania.

* Electricity from Pennsylvania’s wind farms increases electricity supply and helps keep electric market prices affordable and avoids pollution that would be caused by burning fossil fuels to make the electricity wind now already does.

* Electricity from Pennsylvania’s wind farms creates no air pollution. Wind energy emits no mercury that is poisoning birds, fish and working its way into the human food chain, no soot that kills 2,000 Pennsylvanians each year and belches from coal plants, no arsenic, no smog causing pollution that sickens and kills humans, and no global warming pollution that is causing dangerous climate change that will destroy Pennsylvania’s existing forests.

* Every kilowatt-hour of zero pollution electricity produced at a wind farm is a kilowatt-hour that will not be produced by traditional dirty generation sources that cause massive environmental damage. Supply and demand for electricity must constantly be kept in balance and so every kilowatt-hour produced by a wind farm is instantly consumed and avoids the need for that kilowatt-hour coming from another dirty plant.

* Traditional sources of energy like coal-burning power plants pollute every hour of the year that they run. Some opponents of wind wish to focus just on a few peak hours of the year and ignore the enormous environmental damage done during 99 percent of the hours of the year when electricity demand is not at peak levels.

* Wind energy helps Pennsylvania reduce our contributions to the global warming problem;..."

* Wind energy also requires no mining, blowing up mountain tops, and burying hundreds of miles of streams, as coal production does.

* Wind power uses no water in production, while coal and nuclear plants consume huge amounts of water and cause major damage to rivers and aquatic life.

* Wind power creates no dangerous coal ash or radioactive waste that must be stored, as do coal and nuclear plants.

* Wind energy has no fuel costs. Investing in wind energy now means that costs will never escalate in the years ahead, no matter what. The same cannot be said for traditional sources of energy in Pennsylvania.

* Wind farms enhance tourism and create much-needed annual revenue for rural landowners, and do not decrease property average property values, according to research conducted by Lawrence Berkley Laboratories using Pennsylvania and New York data.

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