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Responds to editorial

June 11, 2012
Messenger News

To the editor:

On May 7, 2012, The Messenger printed an editorial concerning the unequal treatment of the fossil fuel and renewable energy industries by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Obama administration as it pertains to new air pollution rules. The editorial stated that there was no money allocated to fossil fuels for research on how to meet these new standards, but millions of dollars would have been allocated if the new standards were for the renewable energy industry.

The editorial stated the Department of Energy fiscal budget for 2013 calls for 1.4 percent of its budget for fossil fuel research and 8.6 percent for renewable energy research and energy efficiency. Energy efficiency research applies to all forms of energy, why put it on the renewable side of the equation only? Between 2002 and 2007 fossil fuel companies received four times more subsidies than renewable energy, how many editorials were printed then about the uneven playing field?

The Department of Energy 2013 budget request includes $5.65 billion for environmental cleanup efforts and $60 million for research into storage, transportation, and disposal of nuclear waste. How much environmental cleanup is needed for renewables? The playing field is still tilted in favor of fossil fuels.

One more thought. In north central Iowa there are many people selling corn to or employed at ethanol plants, or, constructing, maintaining or renting land for hundreds of windmills. How many good-paying jobs with benefits are provided by oil or gas wells, petroleum refineries or coal mines in this area. Perhaps the Messenger should think about where the money comes from to buy the newspaper and the goods and services of the advertisers.

Bill Bahr




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