6.18.2010

And so it begins: renewables and reality

It could be a Saturday Night Live sketch. Or maybe a Seinfeld episode. It might even be worthy of the Three's Company era of jiggly situation comedy. (".... Jack's passion for FILL IN THE BLANK is upended when Chrissy overwhelms him with FILL IN THE BLANK....)

For proponents of renewable energy, there's a strange writing on the wall that's starting to appear. I guess you could call it reality.

Beating on the drum for so long, it became de rirgeur to plead for support of any non-oil, non-nuclear energy source because the chance of getting it was about the same as Dick Cheney growing to be more than 5 feet tall. People felt they had to yell for wind and scream for solar because it was a very noisy room with the stereo cranked up and nobody was really listening, anyway.

Fueled by tax incentives (no pun intended), the radio has finally been turned down ... and renewables are popping up. Out East, big projects like Cape Wind are moving ahead, and small phenoms like the Solar Tracker are going off. Out West, conversations about building thousand mile pipelines for the new grid are inching closer to reality. And in my front yard, NIMBYs and "Renewables Now" are duking it out.

The good part about being involved in the political process (as wind towers and solar array debates are filling my evenings), is that you have all the information at hand. I've got the advocate powerpoint, the anti powerpoint, and the relevant legal decisions from just down the road.

The bad part is that it's no longer a pie-in-the-sky dinner conversation. There are lawyers around.

More to come ....

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