In response to what Michael Webber recently wrote I have written a similarly structured commentary that provides a bit of detail and a slightly different twist to address his comments:
1. We don’t like anyone spinning half-truths and practicing subterfuge on a regular basis in order to make a profit.
2. We don’t like large companies, especially foreign ones, to show up here and avoid testimony under oath; pollute indigenous peoples’ lands; and spend $60 million on smoke to blur the truth.
3. Apparently, Massachusetts doesn’t like it either because it is NOT a new source. Therefore, we actually support the MA AG and many MA environmental NGOs who don’t want NECEC either.
4. It appears that we (opponents) are actually pretty good planners. In 2018 this whole NECEC was sprung on us by CMP and 3 years later we now have a ballot question to allow THE PEOPLE OF MAINE to decide on the NECEC and not just the governor and a few slick suits.
5. The tunnel vision issue is a good point, and probably occurs because one of the projects has a PUC-approved 300-foot Right-of-Way; threatens a remote area with fires and no emergency response within 25 miles (remember CA? same type of line); highlights dirty corporate influence rife with misleading PR propaganda; and no Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) that might highlight the rather exceptional environmental cost to Maine.
6. Personal political advantage probably happens with a VERY small percentage of opponents (and proponents). The overwhelming majority of people are like me, a concerned professional who writes letters on his own time to point out the unconscionable methods being used to ram through this ridiculous project. I have made a list of ‘red flags’ and it is more than 2 pages long. A good project speaks for itself. This project isn’t even in the same universe as a good project.
Strong feelings have been stirred for good reasons: Maine does not really benefit (VT and NH required an EIS but not Maine); power from HQ is NOT clean energy, proven by scientific research; we do NOT want to duplicate what happened to California with their fires; illegal backroom deals for Public Land leases demonstrates the greed that underlies this project; murky PR such as jobs (38 not 1600); reduced bills (hahaha); clean energy (excuse me?); good for Maine (good for corporate big wigs and slick suits); retroactive laws (well, just for the illegal lease agreements between Maine and CMP, but nice try); and the dozens of lobbyists used to block any reasonable effort to quantifiably assess potential risk. This is only a small sample of what the foreign entities who drive this project have done to please their shareholders at Maine’s expense. When entering the voting booth I will be like thousands of Mainers who see through the corporate veil and will vote YES to rid the State of corporate raiders.