There has been a lot of effort to change the way America gets it’s energy. At first, there was a push for ethynol but the costs to produce the corn proved to be greater than the energy it produced. So, greater attention was given to other renewable sources such as wind and solar. A few years ago, a proposal came about to erect a windfarm off of the Massachusetts coast. But there is opposition from prominent residents who, among other things, complain the offshore farm would spoil the view. One of the strongest opponents is none other than Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. who says he’s an environmentalist but wrote in an op-ed that his opposition has many facets, including that the project is only feasible due to government subsidies. I wonder if that means that he’s opposed to all projects that are feasible due to government subsidy?
Now, a United States Senator is throwing up a blockade against a huge solar power farm in the desert. Senator, Diane Feinstein of California has introduced legislation that would create a 1.7 million acre national park in the desert. That would prohibit plans to construct several solar projects including the worlds largest solar farm. The growth in the renewable sector in California was spurred by targets of the Golden State to derive one-third of its electricity from renewable sources. So, we have a US Senator from California making it more difficult for her own state to meet its own objectives. But, this is not the first time something like this has come up. In mid 2008, the Federal Government stood in the way of a similar solar farm in Arizona to protect the desert.
President Obama has made quite a few public pronouncements that his energy policy is centered on developing alternative energy. But, the San Francisco Chronicle says that there has been “more talk than progress” concerning the nation’s energy policy. Here’s the deal…either we want alternative energy or not. I do not believe that there is a way to create energy without some required sacrifice. Everything has a consequence. It seems like that this issue is like so many others. Every election, people seem to say “thorw the bums out” then go and vote for their representative…their guy is okay but the rest..well throw’em out. People in many states want to have use of their automobiles but when it comes to drilling for oil offshore…not of their beaches. Solar power? Great idea..but not in my desert. Winds blow consistently in many area and if we can harness it, it would be a good clean source of energy…as long as its not in my back yard or off my coast. The duplicity is amazing and maddening.
Weather Bottom Line: I haven’t been reporting much on the weather…or anything else much. See, Snow White and I took a little break for Christmas and I didn’t feel like blogging. Last year, we went out of town for Christmas (first visit home for Christmas in a dozen years…an upside to unemployment) but I took along the computer and proceeded to post every day. Not a good thing to do and so I thought that blogging over Christmas was not good no matter if you were at home or not. Anyway, I’ve been seeing rain the forecast and also temperatures in the upper 30’s or low 40’s showing up in the various forecasts and I couldn’t figure out why.
If you noticed on Tuesday night, we had a huge ring around the moon. There is a folk saying of “if the ring is near, the rain if far and if the ring is far, the rain is near.” It is generally true. See, the cloud deck following the passage of a cold front is such that the refraction from moonlight will create a small ring. Since the passage of a cold front typically is an end of the rain, then it works. Conversely, the high cirrus clouds associated with the approach of a warm front prior to a storm system result in a large ring. Almost every single time I’ve noticed a big ring, rain has followed within 24 hours. This should hold true this time. We had our warm front, we are in the mid 40’s on Wednesday. Then we have a cold front. While I had thought we had a reasonable chance for a little snow with wrap around cold and moisture, the GFS only advertises a dusting on New Year’s Day and the NAM has nothing. So, there may be some insignificant snow on Thursday but the real story will be the cold. We will not be above freezing at any hour of any day for the foreseeable future…I think that will hold for at least the first 7 days of 2010.