Franklin Countys First News

Letter to the Editor: NECEC, climate change and our responsibility

As a person who sees the future of the earth’s biome as humanity’s greatest immediate crisis, I feel both heartened and wary when I view the level of citizen participation in the CMP power corridor hearings.

Heartened, because the passion of the opposition reflects their deep appreciation of the ideal of wilderness; and because these opponents identify as advocates for the environment; and because it is clear they are finding strength and solace in pursuing a common cause with others; and because they are feeling the bracing sense of agency that comes from activism.

But wary, because I fear that by submitting their testimony opposing this power line, they believe they are doing their part for climate change, and when the hearings are over they will go home feeling valiant.

I have heard many references to the legacy left for our children. Are we thinking about the fact that with or without a power line, there WILL BE NO WESTERN MAINE FOREST as we know it if we don’t sharply curb carbon fuel emissions? Projected warming and precipitation changes will wipe out the ecosystem that has inspired and nurtured its inhabitants for thousands of years.

In my analysis, it is our greatest responsibility as environmental advocates to work on solving the problem of the carbon fuel emissions that are the chief cause of climate change.

I invite all who have positive intentions about addressing climate change to listen to Peter Garrett of the Citizens Climate Lobby explain a truly promising bi-partisan supported bill to curb carbon emissions that is currently in the U.S. House. His talk is at 6:30 p.m. at Old South Church, Friday, April 5.

It is free, and organized by the Farmington Climate Crisis Coalition, an ad hoc citizens’ action group with no agenda beyond facing the climate crisis together, and doing meaningful things to address it.

Cynthia Stancioff
Chesterville

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11 Responses »

  1. I would like to comment to your letter, Cynthia. I believe that your point about climate change is valid and of utmost importance. I also would like to point out that the people who are against the CMP Proposed Corridor are really not actually doing their part for climate change. I have worked for many years in the field of environmental dynamics include the quantification of climate change on rural communities. I have discussed many things with the people associated with the "No Corridor" group and I can assure you that climate change is NOT the main topic. Recall, if you will, that Janet Mills brought up this subject. The people opposing this proposed project understand that HQ has done nothing but contribute to MORE climate problems with their Hydropower dam system. The people opposed are tired of the injustice and the unethical practices and being bullied. This CMP project does not account for any environmental damage, long-term or short. I am not sure what you mean by your statement about there will NOT be a western Maine forest if we don't lower our emissions ..... yes, part of that is true in that we need to lower emissions. By NOT having the western Maine forest we would not have the capacity to absorb CO2 to reduce the rate of the acceleration of degradation due to climate change. Yes, we need to reduce emissions from carbon-based fuels. But, this Corridor proposed by CMP is certainly not the way to do that. I am also a bit disappointed that you seem to use this CMP corridor and the hard work and dedication demonstrated by the opponents as an advertisement for this speaker. it is quite an insult to the hard working people from "No Corridor" and the other individuals who taken time from their work and families to come to Farmington to testify in front of the DEP and LUPC. There is much more that I would like to write, but I'll end it here ...... for now.

  2. Ozerki ...Yes, her letter is extremely condescending. Thank you for explaining why.

  3. I appreciate your sincere and heartfelt article, but you make it sound like the CMP corridor project is the last resort. It is not. Massachusetts has a state mandate that their energy has to be a certain percentage green by a certain date. In 2016 they passed the Climate Protection and Green Economy Act. If the CMP corridor project falls through they have no choice but to go elsewhere for green energy because they have to meet the green mandate. This one project is not the end of it all. As you probably know, it was the second bid after Massachusetts's first choice (NH) fell through. If the CMP Maine corridor project falls through...they go to Green Door #3.

    This corridor project is not good for Maine's environment and is a poor example of how we should deal with climate change. You can’t solve climate change with projects that destroy the environment because the green environment is the only thing on the planet that it removing CO2 from the air. Should green power projects fragment our few remaining pristine areas and forests like this project would do in Maine? Should green power projects bring pesticides into our pristine areas on a regular basis? Should green projects be an additional threat for forest fires deep in our unbroken forests? The CMP corridor project does all this which is counter productive in regards to solving climate change. Also, I don’t think that rich neighborhoods should get their green energy from sources hundreds of miles away. Everyone needs to be directly involved with solving climate change….not just write a check and let someone else deal with the negative side (especially all the negatives associated with Quebec Hydro). These long distance transmission lines use up more of our natural resources in materials and require more energy during construction and maintenance thereafter. At the very least, long distance transmission lines should be allowed only when they can run along something like an interstate highway where they won’t intrude on exisitng forests.
    Let Massachusetts get their green power closer to home.

  4. I'm "guessing" a New Green Deal supporter write this.
    Nice and friendly.
    But the New Green Deal is actually a "NO" Green Deal.
    It's a farce based on hysteria.
    The wind mill industry loves it.. They are making billions while accomplishing nothing for the "green cause".
    The Gov is either being fooled or her pockets are being lined by these HUGE INDUSTRIES who ONLY CARE ABOUT $$$$$ PROFIT.
    FOLLOW THE FRICKIN MONEY .

  5. I would like to see the results of this bill from Brownie Carson before decisions are made:

    "L.D. 640, would require the DEP or a consultant hired by the department to “review all relevant, verifiable evidence and issue a report on the total net effect on greenhouse gas emissions [region wide]” from the project. The bill sets a deadline of June 1 and directs the DEP to consider the study’s findings as part of the application review."

    I would also like to see a plan showing how this corridor will support more green energy sources than just Hydro Quebec (if it is found to be green). If there is to be a corridor it should serve multiple energy uses. We need to know if the impacts of the corridor are good trade-offs or not in terms of greenhouse gas reduction.

    A corridor maintained in a perpetual state of young regrowth does offer a specific and useful type of wildlife habitat. The quality of the corridor management required from CMP should be defined and enforceable. Funds to support that work by the DEP and/or IF&W should be derived from the people the line serves on a permanent basis--the life of the power line. Public access to the corridor during seasons critical to wildlife should be regulated.

  6. I get that Mass should do what it can to produce green power in Mass. Solar electric is area that Mass has done a lot more than Maine. https://www.seia.org/states-map

    Solar jobs in Mass: 10,210
    Maine: 635

    Megawatts installed in Mass: 2,465.48
    Maine: 55.3

    Number of installation in Mass: 89,733
    Maine: 4,415

    Sure, Mass has large number of high wage earners compared to Maine but it also has had a state policy that supports solar energy. Maine twiddled its solar thumbs for eight years thanks to LePage and CMP. I think CMP lost a lot of respect from the green community for that corruption along with the billing fiasco. I do not trust CMP to be an honest partner in Maine.

    I believe Mass will significant have offshore wind before Maine. We could have been first in the nation without LePage's nonsense. Maine offshore wind could compete with Quebec Hydro without land corridors.

    Glass houses and throwing stones.

  7. Green anything is expensive and is not environmentally friendly, it always has been and it always will be. A 1957 Chevy was greener to produce in 1957 than your average hybrid is in 2019. The 57 had just 15ft of copper, a Prius has over 2 miles of copper. Copper comes from huge open pit mines, more copper requires a bigger mine, bigger mines make bigger holes in the Earth, use more fossil fuel, and trucks to haul the ore, a single CAT 793 dump truck has an 1100 gallon fuel tank and burns 25 gallons an hour, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Escondida copper mine in Chile is the worlds largest open pit copper mine, it uses 24 CAT 793B dump trucks, 28 Komatsu 830E dump trucks and 23 CAT 793C dump trucks, plus 9 Bucyrus 495B shovel loaders. just to produce 9.2% of the world's copper. Then when the trucks haul the ore to the plant, it is dumped into a huge sulfur bath that leaches the copper from the ore, which is is then processed, given a light bath and filtered out of the sulfur bath, then the whole liquid mess is hit with a half effective chemical emulsifier and blown into the Pacific ocean. Yeah, that's really environmentally friendly, all so some hippy can say they are going green to help protect the environment. And that is just one part of a hybrid, they also use plastic made from fossil fuels, lithium, gold, steel, aluminum, titanium, mercury, and lead. But a power line through a section of working forest in western Maine that will carry hydro power to Massachusetts, nope, we can't have that, can we?

  8. Over and over supporters of the CMP project use the fact that this area of the state is a working forest. What is a working forest in this region of Maine? Selective cutting every 20 to 30 years. Overall the forest stays intact containing various stages of succession forest species. Very lush and very green. It is not a permanent clear cut like this transmission line. Not even close. And sure, there are woods roads...but those roads are already there and will still be there even with the project. How does the existence of these narrow woods roads..some graveled most not..... justify adding a 150 foot wide clear cut many, many, miles long maintained by chemicals?

  9. Hrtlss, guess I have to comment and say that I agree with you about the term green and what goes with it. I am an environmental dynamics analyst, forester and wildlife biologist and I can agree with you - i really do dislike the terms 'green' and 'sustainable'. As for the resources you mention we do need this 'stuff' so we can declare war on some unsuspecting country and take all of their precious metals and other resources. If we stuck with your 1957 Chevy then how could we possibly justify invading a bunch of countries? But, all of the chemical processing we do is in some other country or poor neighborhood in the US so what does it matter? And the power line? Yep, I agree that what we need is 3500 acres of clear cut and vegetation suppressing herbicides that will leach into the soil and be washed into streams and the buzz of the EMR coming out of the HVDC lines above. Ah, I love the hum of HVDC in the morning, don't you?

  10. I respect Cynthia Stancioff and her husband Paul and their commitment to deal with climate change. To call hydro power clean and renewable is incomplete. We have to consider other variables such as loss of trees which sequester carbon and yield oxygen and have been killed to the water behind the dam.. What happens as they slowly rot under the water and give off methane. Does anyone seriously think CMP started this project to aid the fight to stop or slow climate change? I do not usually comment about this issue publicly because I love the North Woods and can't understand how they should be harmed. For what!!!??? I believe we should stop the Corridor and then work seriously and diligently together to save our planet. I was indirectly quoted the other night. Governor Mills has said that the Corridor won't cost the Maine taxpayers anything, It won't cost me money, but it will cost me a piece of my Spirit. And yours.

  11. To the Bstrd,,
    I almost always hate your opinion and the way you deliver it. And I hate it that you don't care about that...
    But you made me laugh as hard as I have in a very long time with your take on the new"green cars".. " Yeah, that's really environmentally friendly, all so some hippy can say they are going green to help protect the environment."..LOL
    My pet peeve about those hippys is how much extra fuel they cause everybody else to use when we have to pass them to get where were going,, as they save the Janet's Planet.
    I hate you,, thanks for the great laugh..

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