Local power utility makes no sense | Letter to the editor

Local power utility makes no sense | Letter to the editor

To the editor:

Mr. Tom Goodwin’s letter published on Dec. 16 unfortunately contains both misinformation and disinformation.

He posits that creating a Bainbridge Island Power utility would free us from polluting power sources. Not so. By switching from PSE to BPA we would only pay for allegedly pollution free hydro power, which is anything but pollution free.

The reservoirs are unfortunately major producers of methane gas due to decomposing biomass which water sources flush into them. Then the idea that switching to hydro power would necessarily be cheap and effective is disingenuous.

Nearly half of Pacific Northwest community power utilities charge more than PSE. Even though a 50 MW block of power would be available, Bainbridge Island used 86 MW last winter.

BPA could accommodate us, though we might be using nuclear generated power which provides 9 percent of BPA’s power.

Still, coal-fired power plants would continue to be required and the PNW’s pollution problems would not be affected meaningfully.

Fortunately, the Colstrip, Montana power plant will be closing two of its four units in 2022 and Washington’s only coal fired plant in Centralia is scheduled to close in 2025. They will need to be replaced by natural gas plants as there is nothing else technically capable of generating that amount of power in the near term.

On top of that, BPA power would co-mingle with PSE power in transmission so we may just wind up with coal-sourced electricity no matter what.

As for Microsoft, they have claimed to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy since 2014, but there’s more to the story. Their two major wind power purchases are in Texas and Illinois, to power their nearby data centers. They also purchase Renewable Energy Certificates to cover their other expenditures, but we don’t know where that power is generated and who uses it. So while it sounds nice in a publicity statement, the net effect for PNW pollution is a resounding zero. Misinformation and disinformation. Judging by the experiences of Jefferson County, instituting a Bainbridge Island Power utility would be more expensive than current costs and would do absolutely nothing to address PNW pollution.

Finally, with the city’s record of utility performance, why would anyone trust them with this infinitely larger responsibility?

VARON MULLIS

Bainbridge Island

More in Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor

No bike trails To the editor: Please do not put mountain bike… Continue reading

Letters to the editor

Do we need it? To the editor: Want. Want. Want, but do… Continue reading

Bike trail information off the mark

I’d like to comment on the article in last Friday’s Review, titled… Continue reading

Letters to the editor

Save forest again To the editor: The Jones family moved to Meadowmeer… Continue reading

Letters to the editor

Harrison boondoggle To the editor: The March 12 “second opinion” provided by… Continue reading

Letters to the editor

Affordable housing To the editor: I ravenously read the March 5 Bainbridge… Continue reading

Letters to the editor

Council unreal To the editor: I’m in favor of providing our police… Continue reading

Letters to the editor

Health security To the editor: Given that more than 500,000 Americans and… Continue reading

Letters to the editor

Ambitious plan In November 2020, the Bainbridge Island City Council approved an… Continue reading

Pie in the sky vs. road safety now

Four years ago, to meet comprehensive planning requirements of the state Growth… Continue reading

letter

Girl Scouts Our Girl Scout troop 44331 on Bainbridge Island will not… Continue reading

Letters

Wrong choice To the editor: The island, not just the City Council,… Continue reading