2016-09-09 / Letters

Encouraging the discussion of the dams

To the editor:

This letter is to express my opinions regarding Tom Murphy’s well written letter: “Vote is chance to make environmental statement” (Sept. 2).

Thank you, Tom, for reminding all of us that the various renewable energy alternatives are an environmentally friendly alternative to fossil fuel generation. The scientific concerns about climate change are real and need to be addressed.

My first point is the concern for the environment is a reason why in the relicensing process by FERC, an environmental evaluation of the Mousam will be done.

21st century environmental sciences have new concerns over the detrimental effects that dams have on rivers. FERC, out of concern for the environment, will reevaluate the Mousam dams’ effects on the river and the total environment.

Second, KLPD has voiced concerns about continuing to invest in hydropower on the Mousam, but you bring up different points in your letter: “Any company looking to purchase the district’s generating license between now and 2022 when that license expires, will need that equipment in proper condition as they begin the transition to the modernization of our generating equipment with new-edge 21st century innovative technology.”

To validate your points, what studies have been done to answer the following questions:

1) What will be the new continued maintenance costs on the existing equipment and dams?

2) What value and/or benefit will increased maintenance on the existing equipment and dams have on retrofitting or replacing with new-edge 21st century innovative technology?

3) What type of 21st century innovative technology will be needed?

4) What will be the initial cost of this new equipment?

5) What will be the engineering, installation and maintenance costs of this new equipment?

6) How much hydropower will be produced as a result of this new technology?

7) Finally, what are the total costs environmentally and financially for this energy?

The purpose of my letter and the purpose of the referendum questions will hopefully be to promote a healthy discussion of both sides of these issues.

Once again, I want to quote Doug Coleman’s letter of Aug. 19:

“There are two sides of every coin and there are always options and alternatives for achieving mutually acceptable goals. However, that does require a high level of integrity and responsibility.”

Bill Pasquill

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