Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Inevitability Of NYRI

I've said before that the NYRI power line project is unstoppable because of the one-two punch of downstate's voracious appetite for electricity and equally huge political power. Upstate's ever-dwindling population simply can't compete with the electoral might of New York City and it's environs, a problem further exacerbated by downstate's continuing refusal to take responsibility for it's own energy production needs. Worse, as this New York Times article points out, the downstate-controlled government's insistence on "green" power inevitably requires the construction of multiple powerlines across central New York:

When the builders of the Maple Ridge Wind farm spent $320 million to put nearly 200 wind turbines in upstate New York, the idea was to get paid for producing electricity. But at times, regional electric lines have been so congested that Maple Ridge has been forced to shut down even with a brisk wind blowing.

That is a symptom of a broad national problem. Expansive dreams about renewable energy, like Al Gore’s hope of replacing all fossil fuels in a decade, are bumping up against the reality of a power grid that cannot handle the new demands.

The dirty secret of clean energy is that while generating it is getting easier, moving it to market is not.

None of this would be necessary if downstate would abandon it's irrational fear of nuclear power, but you can rest assured that will never happen.

Update: NYCO has more.

Update: And, like clockwork, NYRI's long delayed application is finally approved:

New York Regional Interconnect’s power line application took a step forward Wednesday when the state Public Service Commission deemed the company’s application complete.

“The process to review NYRI’s application is now officially under way and it will be given a thorough examination by commission staff and interested parties as well as the public,” Commission spokesman Jim Denn said.

A public hearing is set for Wednesday, Oct. 22, in Utica, according to documents on the Commission’s Web site. Another hearing will take place Oct. 21 in Oneonta.