Boston Globe: Now That Ted's Out of the Way, Hurry Up With That Cape Cod Wind Farm

TedAndCapeCodWindmills

On the very day Ted Kennedy was buried at Arlington National Cemetery near his two brothers, a Boston Globe editorial argued to undo part of his legacy.

The pertinent portion of Mr. Kennedy's legacy has to do with his strident opposition, despite a career of enthusiastically imposing environmental initiatives and costs on others, to the building of a wind farm on Cape Cod (the graphic at top right is from a 2006 post at a Greenpeace web site).

The ever-opportunistic Globe wrote a 450-word editorial virtually demanding that President Barack Obama get work started on Nantucket Sound right now, this very instant (HT to an e-mailer):

.... Neither Obama nor his administration has yet weighed in on Cape Wind, the controversial 130-turbine wind farm proposed for Nantucket Sound that could supply the electricity needs of more than 300,000 homes on the Cape and Islands. If Obama’s pledges for a greener economy are to be kept, his administration should not delay any longer the arduous process that began in 2001 to develop this clean energy source.

The proposed offshore wind project has sustained more than seven years of heated debate; political maneuvering, including some by the late Senator Edward Kennedy, a project opponent; and environmental review. It now awaits a decision from the Department of the Interior — the last major regulatory hurdle its developers must clear for the project to move forward. As the country’s first proposed commercial offshore wind farm, and the only project of its kind this far along in the approval process, Cape Wind could open the door for developers to harness the vast wind energy resource along the nation’s eastern seaboard. The approval could make Massachusetts the trailblazer of a power source that is an essential part of the country’s strategy to address global warming and to achieve energy security.

In January, Interior’s Minerals Management Service, the federal agency charged with assessing Cape Wind’s potential impacts on the environment, published a detailed report that found the wind farm would pose little harm to fisheries, birds, and other wildlife. The agency also concluded that developers could readily address any navigational concerns for ships and planes posed by the 440-foot turbines.

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar is now responsible for issuing a decision on the project. ....

Certain commenters at the Globe are not amused. In the process, they smash the Globe's contention that Cape Wind is a truly "commercial" project, berate the paper for its tasteless timing, and remind it that there is another Massachusetts Senator whose name begins with a "K" who is apparently also not a fan of Cape Wind:

"The wind farm is a boondoggle with more public money going into it than private and at sea to save the money it would have to pay on land. Wind-wise, it doesn't even make sense in the location they want for it. It won't benefit any of the homeowners on the Cape and Island. It will be a constant environmental risk for the Nantucket Sound."

"Once again the Boston Globe leaves out the facts. Hopefully, the Obama's now know the ugly truth about this project that the Globe is afraid to print. First, according to the MMS, it will double electric rates. This is after over $70,000,000 a year in federal and state subsidies."

"It's a disservice to the country when articles like this don't mention that wind farms only produce at a 25% 'capacity factor' and that they are usually backed up by fossil fuel generation."

"The Globe would never said this to the face of Ted Kennedy. He has not has his funeral, and they put this in the paper today. Cape Wind is another big dig."

"It is utterly repugnant, disgraceful and disrespectful to the memory of Senator Kennedy that the editors have chosen this day to pitch Cape Wind."

"Now there is only one Senator from our state blocking the building of wind turbines..."

The most recent evidence I could find about John Kerry's position on Cape Wind is that he opposed it six years ago.

Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.

Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.