Pols to Future: Drop Dead

The Big Oil straws who drive the war against Cape Wind

John Keller, WBZ blog

The Cape Cod Times reports that Cape Wind obstructionists and their congressional allies have won a small skirmish in their losing battle to stall, maim, or - preferably - kill construction of the nation's largest offshore wind farm in Nantucket Sound. It appears unlikely to amount to more than several weeks delay in finalizing federal approvals for the project. But one thing we've learned from watching an array of politicians - all of whom pledge allegiance to the theory of tapping alternative energy resources like wind - do everything in their power to stop Cape Wind is that there's no backroom trick they won't try.

A better bet would be Rep. Bill Delahunt, a man who would rather kiss up to Hugo Chavez's authoritarian regime in exchange for a few shipments of cut-rate heating oil to meet the increasingly-desperate energy needs of his constituents than tolerate an innovative clean-energy project that could do much more to meet those needs in the long term. We don't know if Ted Kennedy's prints are on this latest ruse, the way they were back in 2005 when nefarious Alaskan pols Ted Stevens and Don Young suddenly developed a pressing interest in stalling a project thousands of miles away from their turf. A better bet would be Rep. Bill Delahunt, a man who would rather kiss up to Hugo Chavez's authoritarian regime in exchange for a few shipments of cut-rate heating oil to meet the increasingly-desperate energy needs of his constituents than tolerate an innovative clean-energy project that could do much more to meet those needs in the long term. His aide tells the Times Delahunt has been pushing the Coast Guard to draw up sweeping standards for all offshore wind projects, i.e. bury Cape Wind in an endless tangle of unresolvable bureaucratic haggling and stalling. "If you start making the rules up as you go along for each project, you are going to find yourself with all sorts of problems," says Delahunt's mouthpiece.

Not to worry. The likes of Delahunt, Kennedy, Mitt Romney, and the NIMBY-ites and Big Oil straws who drive the war against Cape Wind have made it quite clear over the last seven years what the "rules" are for private-sector investors who might just want to make New England the national showplace for successful development of this clean, reliable, low-cost energy source, thus spurring a badly-needed local green economic boom: you put up millions on spec to go through an endless regulatory process in which the bar will always be moved to a point just out of reach. Executive summary to potential investors around the world: don't come to Massachusetts! Economic growth, cost-of-living relief for the working class and poor, good-paying construction jobs, and long-term environmental protection not wanted! Stay out! Go to Texas, Europe, anywhere but MBY.

 

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