December 25, 2012
Greens fight green energy

The greenies are all for renewable energy until someone invests their time and money and takes a risk on it. Then they fight tooth-and-nail against the actual project. They find every imaginable objection, while still taking up the green dream - somewhere over the rainbow.

In Port Townsend, WA, Port Townsend Paper wants to expand its existing biomass energy generation plant. The greenies fought and lost. But they have appealed and will continue to appeal and appeal. What do they want? The impossible. To keep their lights on and drive their cars without any impact on the environment at all.

The company says the expansion will power 46,000 electric cars.

Peninsula Daily News:

... The place where they have sited the project is environmentally unsound, something that needs to be taken into consideration for any new project," [Gretchen Brewer of PT Airwatchers] said.

The biomass plant when constructed will provide an important source of alternative energy, mill officials said.

"We will continue to evaluate the co-gen project and other measures we can take to reduce our dependence on oil and ways to continue our progress with reducing our greenhouse gas emissions," the company said.

"The co-gen project would provide 25 megawatts of alternative green energy to the grid, which is the equivalent of more than half of Jefferson County's electricity consumption [and] is enough to power 46,000 electric cars each year."

Via Seattle Times.

Posted by Ron Hebron at December 25, 2012 07:13 AM | Email This
Comments
1. Also in the same Peninsula Daily News article:

"The suit urges the requirement of an environmental impact statement prior to construction of the expanded facility that burns wood waste to create electricity."

That does not seem unreasonable to me.

Posted by: Stan on December 25, 2012 07:48 AM
2. The 'opposition' is the craziest alphabet soup of trumped-up 'organizations', all hoping to flaunt their minority NIMBY power at the expense of the rest of us.

I'd expect that in looking at their various 'boards of directors' or 'commissariats' or whatever 'grand kleagles' rule their activities, you'd find an interlocking directorate worthy of the Sherman Antitrust Act.

Posted by: Insufficiently Sensitive on December 25, 2012 03:31 PM
3. The ends do not justify the means, and having a polluting corporation declare their project "green" doth not make it so:

Both [proposed biomass-burning plants] have been opposed by environmental groups who say that the facilities will increase pollution, especially of ultrafine particles that can lodge in lungs.

Also, proper reading-comprehension skills can assist in learning about the issues upon which one chooses to comment:

The company says the expansion will power 46,000 electric cars.

Nope. That's a bit of feel-good greenwashing:

"The co-gen project would provide 25 megawatts of alternative green energy to the grid, which is the equivalent of more than half of Jefferson County's electricity consumption [and] is enough to power 46,000 electric cars each year."

There's nothing to suggest the electricity will go for either purpose. Paper mills serve a declining use in our digital age, and the paper mills around here have always depended upon hand-outs from the government, in the form of below-market prices for the unsustainable removal of trees from public land. There's nothing particularly 'green' about any of that, and labeling it in the title of this post, again, doth not make it so.

Have a merry and green Xmas!

Posted by: tensor on December 25, 2012 05:20 PM
4. I'm glad somebody around here remember to say Merry Christmas! It's not against the law, you know, rumors notwithstanding. So:

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! =:D-

Posted by: Roger Rabbit on December 25, 2012 05:43 PM
5. Merry Christmas to all in the Evergreen State !!

Posted by: KDS on December 25, 2012 08:45 PM
6. The mill will use the exzisting boilers with added generating capacity and improved pollution control equipment, so this is a low impact upgrade.

Regarding paper mills in general, newsprint and writing paper use has been declining for a decade, but packaging and tissue use has not. Ask the Chinese if paper production is declining.

I have watched industry leave our state for all of my employed life. These are not dying industries, just dying here. Shipbuilding, Aluminum, Timber, Cement and Paper too.

My company has been located in the northwest for 70 years. We make more equipment for the paper industry then ever. We just don't build it or sell it here.
anymore

Posted by: Engineer on December 26, 2012 08:18 AM
7. The mill will use the existing boilers with added generating capacity and improved pollution control equipment, so this is a low impact upgrade.

Regarding paper mills in general, newsprint and writing paper use has been declining for a decade, but packaging and tissue use has not. Ask the Chinese if paper production is declining.

I have watched industry leave our state for all of my employed life. These are not dying industries, just dying here. Shipbuilding, Aluminum, Timber, Cement and Paper too.

My company has been located in the northwest for 70 years. We make more equipment for the paper industry then ever. We just don't build it or sell it here.
anymore

Posted by: Engineer on December 26, 2012 08:19 AM
8. The mill will use the existing boilers with added generating capacity and improved pollution control equipment, so this is a low impact upgrade.

Wait -- I thought this project was a risky proposal, for which we greens were required to show great respect for such gutsy riskiness! Are you saying the author of this post is not well-informed about the issue?!?!

(Seriously -- as a fellow engineer, you know it should still have a valid environmental-impact study, right?)

We make more equipment for the paper industry then ever. We just don't build it or sell it here.

You're saying that an industry built on unsustainable levels of resource extraction, made possible by government subsidy, will decline as the resource declines? Wow, it's almost as if you're writing a post about how government distorts the economy. Maybe there's a local web site which might publish it?

Posted by: tensor on December 26, 2012 09:13 AM
9. There are places in the US where the paper indutry is growing. There, the timberland is privately owned and better managed.

And only someone who is not much of an engineer would think that every capital improvement requires an impact statement.

Posted by: Engineer on December 26, 2012 02:52 PM
10. @9 Engineer on December 26, 2012 02:52 PM,

Is the PTP Paper Mill in Port Townsend currently in compliance with EPA standards and regulations regarding air pollution?

Posted by: MikeBoyScout on December 26, 2012 03:15 PM
11. MikeBS,

The PTP mill is currently licensed and operating per standards in existence when its license was granted. That includes State and Federal. It's in compliance as far as the law is concerned - meaning it met the standards and regulations required at the time the permit was issued.

Posted by: Shanghai Dan on December 26, 2012 04:37 PM
12. People who vote Left do not understand physics. If they did, they would know why wind and solar will never be viable base load energy sources. Democrats are powered by unicorns and other inspiring yet imaginary concepts.

Posted by: Leftover on December 26, 2012 08:07 PM
13. To the rank and file leftists, the fact they don't understand physics is immaterial. What matters is they are reactionary toward the positions taken by conservatives - whether it be green energy or 2nd amendment rights.

Being contrarian against the interpretation of any political topic by conservatives is all that matters. The fact that marxism parallels a good number of their views doesn't phase them unless they are called on it.

Posted by: KDS on December 26, 2012 08:43 PM
14. @13 What will you do when fossil fuels run out, lunar mining of He3?

Posted by: Roger Rabbit on December 26, 2012 09:35 PM
15. @16 Oh wait, check that, I forgot that paying more for oil creates more oil.

Posted by: Roger Rabbit on December 26, 2012 09:36 PM
16. 15. @13 What will you do when fossil fuels run out, lunar mining of He3?
Posted by Roger Rabbit at December 26, 2012 09:35 PM

The answer is as plain as the nose on your face - Nuclear power !

That ought to tighten your leftist sphincters.

Posted by: KDS on December 26, 2012 09:52 PM
17. Rodent @ 15 soiled himself while squeeling: What will you do when fossil fuels run out, lunar mining of He3?

We've been hearing that idiocy about peak oil for the past 35-40 years, rodent. Time to grow up, son.

Posted by: Rick D. on December 26, 2012 10:55 PM
18. @15 & 16,

You are ignorant of so much. Blinded by the groupthink that dominates the Left. Here's your chance to educate yourself: Thorium

Posted by: Leftover on December 26, 2012 11:00 PM
19. And only someone who is not much of an engineer would think that every capital improvement requires an impact statement.

Your claim, of this being a relatively minor capital improvement, contradicts the claim made in this post, that it is a major new investment. You and the author of the original post can fight that out amongst yourselves.

Meanwhile, if significant new emissions will result from operation of this project, then why would an EIS not be required? It doesn't take much of an engineer to see that would be a good idea.

Posted by: tensor on December 27, 2012 11:58 AM
20. @20,
But the over regulation of everything now requires EIS to the point of stifling innovation and energy production. Greens talk about sustainability, but what they really mean is unsustainibility. Greens/Left want to create an environment where it is difficult or impossible for mankind to live in abundance and prosperity.

On the other side, we realize that by using resources and technology wisely we can have sustainable abundance. This seems impossible to the typical Green supporting Democrat because you have been told to dutifully repeat peak oil myths and focus hate on fossil fuels and love on wind and solar. That is the extent of the Democrat universe. Anything outside that box does not exist.

Posted by: Leftover on December 27, 2012 01:09 PM
21. But the over regulation of everything now requires EIS to the point of stifling innovation and energy production.

Let's try again, shall we?

"The co-gen project would provide 25 megawatts of alternative green energy to the grid, which is the equivalent of more than half of Jefferson County's electricity consumption..."

That's quite a bit of power generation, and the concern about the type of emissions -- "ultrafine particles that can lodge in lungs" would seem to justify an EIS. Since the entire rest of your comment is nothing more than empty repetition of cheap anti-Green talk, why don't you instead tell us what your version of a rational threshold for an EIS might be?

Posted by: tensor on December 27, 2012 01:18 PM
22. Small particles sound scary to the uninformed in the same way that radiation sounds scary to the uninformed. You get more radiation exposure living in Denver due to elevation than you do living near Fukushima last year. And you are constantly exposed to all manner of small micron sized particles, and most of them from combustion of vehicle exhaust, heating, pollen, dust, bacteria, etc. Are you prepared to give up all energy production, vehicle transportation and heating because that is a majority of particulate and not paper mfg?

What will be produced by PTP is insignificant in the larger picture, but you are concerned because you do not really understand the world around you.

Table of typical micron particulate.

Posted by: Leftover on December 27, 2012 02:02 PM
23. Riddle me this?
Why would greenies protest the expansion of a renewable energy project? Note the WAC:

http://apps.leg.wa.gov/wac/default.aspx?cite=458-20-273

Then have a gander at this article where outgoing beloved Gov. moved things forward:

http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2017692472_apwaxgrrenewableenergy1stldwritethru.html

Then you must ask yourself, if the law provides environmental energy credits, aka "green tags" for biomass what's the beef?
Could it me we have not in my yard syndrome?
Or is the entire program a fraud?
I vote the latter!

Posted by: Energy Joker on December 27, 2012 03:16 PM
24. The great thing is, we now have Governor "Apollo's Fire" ready to take charge! Feel better now? You can almost taste the the "Special Sauce" of the Inslee green energy programs.

Posted by: Smokie on December 28, 2012 07:58 AM
25. Smokie, the only green energy program our new Gov. has knowledge of, was the one that put a new roof on his Bainbridge home because of moss.
He really does think he know something about green energy, when in fact, his book and all $14k in sales was first on the "toss in the garbage" charts.
He will find a way to waste more tax payer money for sure, increase the deficit and provide hand outs to his supporters!
Isn't that what politics is all about?

Posted by: Energy Joker on December 28, 2012 12:03 PM
26. The spammers started and it's been four days. Closing comments.

Posted by: Ron Hebron on December 29, 2012 06:43 AM