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Home arrow Opinion arrow Letters arrow Letters and comments for June 30, 2011

Letters and comments for June 30, 2011

Letters and comments for June 30, 2011

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To the Editor:

A front page AP piece in this newspaper on June 14 was titled “NW wind farms seek end to springtime shutdowns.”

The article contained much of significance. Currently, there is an excess of productive capacity for electricity and insufficient grid to transmit all that can be produced. It seems that the Pacific Northwest wind industry doesn’t want to share in curtailments of energy production in a time when river flows in the Columbia and Snake River basins are at such a high level. Bonneville Power Administration had to make difficult decisions as to who produces power and how much all the while giving consideration to threatened salmon and steelhead runs.

It goes to show that in our region, we don’t need wind generation. If we needed wind energy in the Pacific Northwest, we would be utilizing it here; instead, it is shipped out of state. When there is more energy than can be transmitted or

marketed, then wind generation should rightly be expected to produce less just as other sources of production must do.

Instead, the wind industry is demanding that BPA pay energy producers outside the Pacific Northwest to curtail production so our Northwest wind farms can run full time. If wind producers think this is such a fine idea, maybe they should be the ones paying others to not produce power. Should BPA do as demanded, ratepayers like you and I would eventually bear this expense through our co-op. The wind industry seems to believe they should receive preferential treatment.

Wind energy is still about three times as costly as our hydropower. Wind generation is a relatively new form of producing electricity. Common sense would dictate that they share in these curtailments. BPA holds to correct position in this disagreement and they should stand firm.

Ray Randall


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