Governor LePage: New England Governors Agree That Energy Reform Needed

Radio Address: New England Governors Agree: Energy Reform Needed

August 4, 2012

Benjamin Franklin said there were only two things certain in life: death and taxes.

Hello. This is Governor Paul LePage.

There are two constituents that for far too long have not been represented in Augusta. They are the taxpayer and the ratepayer. It’s no secret I’m no fan of excessive taxes. I don’t believe burdening Maine people with more taxes is going to make our state prosperous. I also don’t support energy policy that shifts costs onto you, the ratepayer. Special interests groups should not come first – Maine people do.

The electricity rates we’re paying right now are starting to climb again after a couple of years of improvement so we must continue to work on ways that will lower our energy costs. Additionally, we must address the extra charges on electricity bills that subsidize services such as the winterization of homes and welfare programs. These extra charges are a tax on your bill.

This week, Maine was represented at the New England Governors and Canadian Premiers Conference in Burlington, Vermont. Discussions involved the future of the region’s energy policy. One thing is obvious: the status quo of continuing to benefit a select few developers at the cost of energy generators and you, the ratepayer, must end. And it is clear that we need to introduce reforms to our energy policy in order to improve Maine’s economy. The only way we fix this is to encourage legislators to learn more about it and demand they fix the problem.

This is not a partisan issue: Rhode Island Governor Chafee, an independent, said he intends to remove the 100-megawatt cap on hydro in his state, and Connecticut democratic Governor Malloy acknowledged that high electricity costs in New England are hurting economic development. These are things I have been saying since day one. We need to stand up to the special interests that are preventing Maine and New England from receiving less expensive, reliable energy.

In the coming years, there is going to be an increased demand for energy in New England. This puts Maine in a prime position to be a key energy exporter and transporter for the region. We currently lead New England in renewable energy generation, and are positioned to become a key route to deliver more cost effective Canadian energy to the rest of the region. This would bring significant sums of money into the state and directly benefit Maine ratepayers, but we can’t do it without a Legislature determined to represent the interest of the ratepayer.

In the past, Maine has tried subsidizing certain types of energy, and tried forcing energy providers to purchase electricity from specific sources, with no regard of its cost to Mainers. This simply lined the pockets of a select few powerful people, while hurting taxpayers and businesses.

Democrats and Republicans across New England agree that we need to change the way we do energy. We need to increase access to less expensive renewable resources such as hydro and more cost effective North American clean sources such as natural gas, foster partnerships with our Canadian neighbors, and break the stranglehold of special interests.

Your vote counts this November. If you want to lower energy costs we must demand that our elected officials commit to this important reform.

Thanks for listening. Ann and I hope you have a great weekend.

http://www.maine.gov/tools/whatsnew/index.php?topic=Gov_Radio_Addre...

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Comment by Rick Conrad on August 5, 2012 at 9:40pm
Comment by Rick Conrad on August 5, 2012 at 9:36pm
Comment by Donna Amrita Davidge on August 5, 2012 at 9:16pm

Rick- interesting and to see if the gvt knows and does something with this.

Comment by Rick Conrad on August 5, 2012 at 8:32pm

  There is an energy source that holds real promise of providing energy cheaper than coal.  Thorium is a readily available inherently safer nuclear option.   The thorium reaction cycle does not produce weaponizable by products.   This why our government has not pursued this energy source, our  nuclear power program in this country is based on the need for nuclear weapons not energy.  

   Thorium reactors are throttleable and can handle variable loads.   The reactor vessel if it over heats the thorium in the core expands making it impossible to reach critical mass.  Also in the event of core over heating the core can be drained into smaller multiple vessels, crisis averted. 

Comment by Donna Amrita Davidge on August 5, 2012 at 4:19pm

agreed, let's get wind on the OUTS..thanks Dan

Comment by Dan McKay on August 5, 2012 at 4:12pm

With wind fetching nearly $100 per megawatt-hour from utilities under the gun to comply with renewable standards, which is three times the going market rate on ISO-NE, I would say wind is on the outs. Not to mention the added costs to beef up transmission for wind's abrupt and infrequent surges. Hydro and gas shall rule. Let's help the Governor.

Comment by Donna Amrita Davidge on August 5, 2012 at 4:03pm

yes we all know about that ridiculous rate increase..,yikes..

Comment by Long Islander on August 5, 2012 at 3:40pm

CMP transmission rates went up by 19.6% on July 1, 2012 due to wind power:

http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/maine-electricity-rates...

Comment by Donna Amrita Davidge on August 5, 2012 at 3:29pm

I hope this means NO WIND and that we can, as we should, count hydro as renewable..

Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

https://pinetreewatch.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/

 

Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power

 

Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT

******** IF LINKS BELOW DON'T WORK, GOOGLE THEM*********

(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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We have the facts on our side. We have the truth on our side. All we need now is YOU.

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