Barbara Durkin’s “Another View” on wind power (Nov. 15) provided much-needed factual information about the faulty premise upon which wind power is built, and as someone who is not an expert on the topic, I applaud her viewpoint. She convinced me.

So imagine my surprise when I read the very next day that your editorial writers support wind power and urge the new governor to support it, too.

Did they not read Ms. Durkin’s comments?

Throughout the green energy effort, one very valuable economic concept – economy of scale – has been overlooked.

Simply stated, using an example in the case of electric power, it is more costly (and less economical) to build a series of small power plants, and it is less costly (and more economical) to build a single large power plant that can produce the same amount of power as the smaller plants combined.

There are always going to be carbon footprints. Just take a look at the human race, which is the single greatest contributor of carbon dioxide in the world.

Yet the generation of wind power without subsidies seems doomed, according to Ms. Durkin. To that I would add economy of scale, which cannot be applied to it.

Floyd Folsom

Alfred

 

I stand proudly with the courageous Mainers who have recently stepped forward to stop the destructive industrialization of Maine’s mountains by out-of-state companies (“Wind-power protesters arrested,” Nov. 9).

Without massive taxpayer subsidies, First Wind of Massachusetts and TransCanada, to the north, would not be devastating Maine’s precious mountaintops and ridge lines.

These taxpayer-subsidized corporations are first and foremost out to get millions of our federal tax dollars.

They are tearing apart Maine’s fragile mountain ecology with false promises driven by greed.

Maine is not South Dakota or the Texas plains, where the wind blows hard and strong much of the time. Industrial wind is absolutely wrong for our mountains and is the wrong clean-energy choice for Maine.

Much of our housing stock is poorly insulated. As a result, a community-based, statewide energy-efficiency project would be the very best and most cost-effective way for Maine to significantly reduce its consumption of fossil fuels.

We can insulate every home and business in Maine, while creating thousands of jobs, and for a much lower cost than taxpayer-subsidized industrial wind.

We can then avoid the terrible environmental cost of tearing up our mountains with an unnecessary and destructive industrial wind scheme.

Every citizen who treasures our beautiful mountain landscape should speak up against this taxpayer-subsidized corporate assault. Together, we can stop it.

We must not devastate Maine’s mountains or any other special place in order to save it. If Mainers allow this corporate assault on our mountains to continue, we will be filled with regret for what we have lost.

We must stop industrial wind right now, invest instead in an effective energy-efficiency campaign and preserve the Maine we love.

Robert Goldman

South Portland

 

On a trip to New York state in October, my wife, Jean, and I happened to run across a wind farm. Never having seen one before, and being aware that some Mainers object to wind farms coming to our state, we decided to explore a bit.

When we saw the first windmills rising before us, we wondered why anyone would object to their appearance, for it was as though the countryside had developed wings and was rising into the air. It was simply a beautiful sight to see, thrilling, actually.

Being in the car, we could hear nothing, and we knew that another objection to the machines was the noise they were supposed to generate, so we parked in the middle of the farm, opened the windows, and turned off the engine.

We sat there a long time, listening, but we heard nothing. We heard absolutely nothing! We thought that was remarkable, because we knew that one of the biggest tourist attractions in Holland was the old-fashioned windmills, and we knew those were noisy if picturesque.

These mills in New York were much more ethereal, noiseless so far as we could tell, and very far from being polluters of either the landscape or the ear. And how a bird could let itself be hit by one of the big, slowly rotating blades is beyond our understanding.

Lewis Turco

Dresden

The surf may be up, but parking’s down at Higgins

 

As a surfer who frequents Higgins Beach, I am crushed to hear of the extent to which the Scarborough Parking Committee has gone to limit beach access.

For Maine surfers, Higgins Beach offers some of the most consistent surf that is especially good for certain tides, swell angles and wind directions.

Beyond Higgins, surfers have the option to surf at Scarborough Beach State Park ($85 “surfing pass” required), or Pine Point ($10 parking per day). Thankfully, Old Orchard Beach has metered parking during the summer and free parking during the winter.

I was relieved to learn that the Higgins Beach parking lot had been preserved, but how long will this last? If the lot is to be the solution for parking during the winter season, will it be plowed?

Surfers should not have to bear the entire cost on their own.

Comparing this to the California system upsets me even more. For $125 per year, California surfers are allowed to surf at every state park beach. I want to be assured by Barbara Belicose’s statement that “Nobody at Higgins Beach wants to limit beach access.”

But Barbara, can I trust you? Is this the extent of the policy?

Parking at Higgins has been an ongoing issue, so who’s to say this is not the beginning of a slippery slope to eliminating beach access altogether? Surfers have been riding waves at Higgins since the 1960s.

In addition, must all surfers be condemned for the faults of a few? To my fellow surfers, we had better heed this clarion call.

And we cannot simply point the finger. It seems that concessions will need to be made on both sides if we are to come up with a permanent solution that meets the needs of both the Higgins Beach community members and surfers/beachgoers alike.

Benjamin J. Harder

Portland