Monday, September 1, 2014

New England Ratepayers Association

I read the opinion piece, "Our electricity grid is bending; without change it will break," by Marc Brown in the Saturday, August 30th, Sentinel with great interest.  Some of Mr. Brown's points had me nodding in agreement, but others had me scratching my head. 
For instance, Mr. Brown states that, "...Northern Pass (1200 MW) and Footprint natural gas plant (700 MW) in Salem, Mass., are two projects that could bring much-needed base load power to New England, but both have been met with opposition.  Footprint, whose future is in question, has been opposed by environmental groups like the Conservation Law Foundation because it is a fossil-fuel generator, despite the fact that it emits half of the carbon dioxide and none of the sulfur dioxide of the plant that it would replace."  Yet, he fails to mention that methane gas has 84 times the global-warming potential of carbon dioxide over a 20-year period and 28 times over a 100-year period. Natural gas is a more dangerous greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide due to the greater global-warming potential of methane gas.  Why omit that fact?
Whether or not I agree with an author's viewpoint, I generally check the organization from which the writer draws his authority.  In this case, Mr. Brown is the Executive Director of New England Ratepayers Association.
A Google search of New England Ratepayers Association reveals that, ironically, given his accusations of obstruction by New England Power Generation Association, his Ratepayer Association is funded by unnamed sources and waged a costly campaign against the "Cape Wind" project in Massachusetts.
Mr. Brown owns an ice cream shop in Kingston, NH and was formerly the director of the State Wide FreedomWorks, a Tea Party-affiliated organization with ties to conservative financier and oil industry giant David Koch.
Caveat Emptor, folks!

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