A Green Game of Chess - Granite Grok

A Green Game of Chess

Green chess

New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan has written a letter to Connecticut governor Dannel Malloy, in objection to a legislative effort in the “Nut”-meg state, to redefine what Connecticut will view as ‘green energy’ for the purpose of meeting their renewable portfolio standard.

The bill, which could be voted on this week by the Connecticut House of Representatives, would reclassify large-scale hydroelectric power projects such as Northern Pass – which has not yet submitted a proposal – as “renewable energy sources.” At the same time, the bill would eliminate already operating small wood-fired plants as a renewable energy source under the Connecticut standards.

Governor Hassan goes on to point out that Northern Pass might be bad for New Hampshire’s scenic views and not burning wood could be bad for jobs and forestry and so on.  Valid points as far as they go which is to say they have little or nothing to do with green or energy and everything to do with politics.

It’s all about the politics.

New Hampshire, for example, is a net exporter of electricity (which begs questions about why our rates are so damn high seeing as we’re selling the stuff to everyone else).  While it is primarily nooclear energy we bus off to points not New Hampshire, once you pile it all together we could just as easily ask how much burnt wood could a Wood-Hassan not burn if a Wood-Hassan couldn’t burn wood; or, if Dannel and company bail on wood as a ‘renewable portfolio energy’ source then  Wood-Hassan would get stuck with wood power, could-power, should-power that we were not using or needing to begin with that would (sorry again) also put a dent in the New Hampshire liberal Utopian energy surreality of New Hampshire as the future wood (argh!) chip ethanol Mecca of planet Gore.

Or something.

Hassan also infers that Connecticut should not be so quick to jump on the Northern Pass Hydro bandwagon as no proposal has yet been submitted.   But since when was ‘approval’ required prior to action on its presumption?  Governor Hassan had planned to spend $80 million in Casino fees from Casino’s we not only didn’t have but that were not yet legal.

Malloy has legal casino’s  but that ‘natural resource’ has done nothing to stop the oppressive growth of his state’s other gambling habit–risking other people’s money on the ever widening influence of state government and the debt and budgetary gymnastics that follow.  Even his local Indian’s have burned through their free ride and are asking for handouts turning gambling into little more than another path to state-backed welfare.

Hassan has also been quite liberal in her spending one-time money on permanent fixtures of government for which there are no future revenues, so for her to question Malloy’s turning over his own progressive green ‘leaf’ is a bit hypocritical.

As for what is or is not ‘renewable, there is no what or why-for to explain those designations other than that they are entirely political and have no bearing on whether an energy source is renewable or not.  Burning wood requires trees and releases CO2 which progressives believe is bad.  Leaving the trees as they are absorbs more COwhich the progressives believe is good.  Refusing to let local forest managers deal with trees before they create a situation where a Progressive Senator from New Hampshire can blame a sitting Republican President for global warming induced wild-fires is just as reasonable as saying nothing when wildfires rage under a sitting Democrat president who does nothing, while forest management that fuels Hassan’s political aspirations is “critical” to New Hampshire’s forestry future and Connecticut meddling with what is renewable in Connecticut to her detriment cannot go unchallenged.

Trees are very political, and they didn’t even know it.  So any case that Governor Maggie “Wood” Hassan might make about wood burning being good–while I suspect she has a programmed dislike for burning coal  or bashing electrons together, clean-wise or otherwise (which is still bad)–will probably fall on Dannel’s deaf ears; unless he and his legislature are playing Wood for political advantage; to get Hassan and NH to buy in on something he needs that he does not believe he can get without some leverage.  (Kind of like Dan Eaton holding NH kids hostage so he can water-board more spending out of the state budget.)

This process is, I note with irony, only possible when you tie your wagon to progressive ne’er-do-wells and regional renewable power schemes, or the latest fad in energy management for the good of all mankind, Amen- may peace be upon the earth mother.

While the easiest solution to all of this would be to ditch the RPS altogether, to bail on the green energy mandates and quotas (and RGGI)–because it only exists as a political device designed to drive up energy prices in pursuit of the chimera of mitigating a trace gas with no measurable effect on anything but the blood pressure of liberals and the cost of electricity–that is not likely to happen any time soon.  Bad central planning, to the worm infested mind of any proper Marxist liberal, is better than no central planning at all.  And even though the majority of the public is disinterested in the so-called problem, most of them have been adequately ‘schooled’ in the idea that their exhaled breath could change the weather (forever), that they are inclined to let that water pass under that bridge as long as they are not expected to talk about it at length or in any great detail.

So if we’re stuck with it, why can’t we try to get a universal agreement on what is renewable energy?  Politics.

In most of the world nuclear and hydro power are renewable, but progressives in the US killed the nuclear demon more than thirty years ago and have since regulated it into the mostly too expensive to be worth the time category for most investors interested in building or operating a facility, and are doing their best to put an end to the plants we still have.  France, the progressive Euro-mother ship, meanwhile, gets almost all of its renewable energy–most of its energy–from nuclear.  Go figure?

But why, without regard to Northern Pass or anything related to it, is hydro power NOT considered a renewable energy resource in New Hampshire?  What is not renewable about water pouring past a point throughout the past into the future for as far as we can see?  Well in New Hampshire, I suspect, it is because liberals give a damn about dams.  But most of those are the small variety, suitable for use as torture devices by the NH department of environmental services for extorting tribute from every local town who has one; trapped between the touristy attraction of a Kodak picture moment where water is cascading in the foreground of a scenic New England landscape and tithing to an extortion-based bureaucracy that sends regulatory strong men to collect the environmental protection money for the privilege.  Damn those dams and every damn, damning thing about them.  So hydro is dammed, so to speak.

But in the larger scheme, allowing nuclear and hydro to count as renewable would have put New Hampshire, and most of the states that tap these sources, well above the arbitrary political benchmark of the 25% green energy generation mandate (excluding smaller generators whom the central planners have to screw into bankruptcy anyway for the central planning to fail according to plan), thus putting a quickly thrust dirk into the spleen of the green energy chimera.

The meddling progressives desire to control energy (and therefore us) is too powerful a force to risk letting common sense penetrate the debate, but even green-eye-shade liberals know that looking for a 35% or 50% green mandate (whatever green means at that point) might get them all thrust up against the wall and not long for a rhetorical dirk shoved into their political spleens.  So we play a game.

A game that the Connecticut Legislature and their Governor are now playing with Governor Maggie Hassan to her potential and somewhat ironic detriment.

Hassan also hints, by way of irony+hypocrisy= democrat policy, at Connecticut’s northward glance as off-shoring energy dollars to Canada, which defies not just the globalist view of progressives like Hassan but denies the fact that chunks of Canada are actually part of the ‘We-are-the-world-we-are-the-people’ Regional Green House Gas Initiative emissions cartel that Hassan and her ilk chained us to so willingly just a few years ago.

As far as I’m concerned, all the contradictions included, Hassan has reaped what she and her party have sewn.  Justice, if there were any to be had, would come in the form of a disenfranchised populace discovering that the professional left has made once reliable and afford energy into this bizarre game of chess which the Democrats in New Hampshire are now losing at our expense.

Should the public decide that they are no longer willing to let that water just pass under that bridge, they might realize that this game has served to tax them mightily to the benefit of people who are less concerned about ensuring the ground is fertile for affordable and reliable utilities to better your life at your discretion and more concerned about how to use those “utilities” to manipulate behavior regardless of the cost.