TERRE HAUTE —
is fact, not fraud
I want to respond to Thomas Tucker regarding his June 16 letter about “global warming fraud.”
Thomas: The earth is round, not flat. The earth orbits the sun, not vice versa. Global warming and the concept that human activity contributes to global warming are facts, not “fraud.” Scientists have nothing to gain by stating that global warming is occurring. There is no “political agenda” on the part of climate scientists.
On the other hand, the mega corporations who are involved in selling carbon-based energies have a huge financial stake in denying global warming, which their products contribute to. Having said that, however, you’ve probably noticed large advertising campaigns in all major media lately by big oil companies expounding how they are concerned about the environment and are working to produce cleaner energy. In other words, even the major sources of carbon pollution are being forced to admit that there really is a problem!
Thomas, you make the common but serious mistake of latching on to one person or one study and then projecting those conclusions to be proven scientific fact. I would recommend you look at a very extensive new study conducted by the team of John Cook and Dana Nuccitelli, as reported by the Washington post on May 18, 2013.
In this study, researchers sifted through almost 12,000 climate-related research study abstracts written over the past 20 years. They found that a full 97 percent of those studies concluded that global warming is a serious problem, and that humans contribute to global warming. That is an awfully strong consensus.
Furthermore, there has been agreement among climate researchers for quite some time that anything above 350 parts-per-million (ppm) of carbon in the atmosphere is “incompatible with life.” In other words, when we pass 350 ppm of carbon, all creation doesn’t suddenly drop dead, but it is on a downward slope toward destruction. Not only have we passed the 350 ppm threshold, but recent measurements at climate stations in Hawaii have measured 400 ppm for the first time. Not only is global warming happening, but it is increasing at a much faster rate than was anticipated.
Finally, I implore everyone to look into both sides of the issue before coming to a conclusion on such an important matter. You can find more facts at websites like www.SkepticalScience.com, www.IPCC.ch (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), and www.350.org, a grassroots organization started by a concerned Christian whose goal is to disseminate accurate information about caring for creation.
— Richard Kennel, Ph.D, HSPP
More to learn
about new plant at Edwardsport
Now that Duke Energy’s Edwardsport IGCC is allegedly “commercial” as of June 7, it’s once again time to set the record straight and fill in the blanks. For over seven years now, Duke and the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission have conveniently left out information they prefer the public not be told, as perhaps the truth is too inconvenient.
Duke, along with the IURC, continues to perpetuate the myth that the plant will result in just a 14.5 percent rate increase. The reality is that this 14.5 percent represents only a portion of the financing costs for the project. Additional financing costs of at least $320M, as well as the actual construction costs currently capped at $2.595B, are not included. That’s right, nearly $3B yet to be accounted for and ultimately coming from ratepayer pocketbooks.
That 14.5 percent only represents the approximately $665M in Construction Work in Progress charges, or CWIP, a tracker or extra fee tacked onto the bill of captive Duke ratepayers. How much more will monthly bills increase after the other $3B is factored into rates? Ask Duke or the IURC … see if you can get a straight answer.
Duke is already collecting approximately $30M/month from ratepayers just for financing costs. In fact, Duke ratepayers will pay more just for the financing charges for the Edwardsport fiasco than Indianapolis Power & Light is seeking in total for their proposed natural gas plant in Morgan County, a plant that will produce approximately the same amount of power.
Duke claims its construction costs are capped at $2.595B, but that isn’t accurate. Duke declared the plant “in-service” on June 7, which effectively marks the end of this so-called “cost cap” from the settlement. From this date forward, ratepayers can potentially be stuck with every dollar Duke spends on the plant, and there remains a lengthy “punch list” of items that are yet to be completed. So, the settlement effectively exposes consumers to the potential of significant costs outside of the cap, which was intended to protect them.
Lastly, it needs to be understood that the IURC has declined to protect consumers from a white elephant by refusing to place any operational or performance requirements on the Edwardsport IGCC plant. Despite this plant being a first of its kind technology, never built or operated at this scale anywhere in the world, if it doesn’t work or operates at less than the 85 percent capacity factor that Duke opined the plant will achieve, Duke ratepayers are stuck with the bill, no questions asked. As long as the plant runs for even a minute, Duke gets the full amount as allowed under the settlement.
With Duke already collecting over $30 million/month from customers for this plant which is already two years behind schedule, Duke indicates it will be another 15 months before the plant is expected to have its “long-term level of availability” — whatever that means. Duke has been less than forthcoming every step of the way with this boondoggle … why should anyone believe them now?
— Kerwin Olson
Executive Director Citizens Action Coalition
TERRE HAUTE —
RONN MOTT: Spring activities settle into northside park
Some say young love blossoms like the flowers in the spring. It must be spring, because we witnessed the first wedding ceremony performed in the Collett Park gazebo on a recent Saturday.
EDITORIAL: Get smart with 911
Worst-case scenarios when emergency service are needed are not things people like to think about. But focused attention on details in advance could make a life-changing, even life-saving, difference in the future.
FLASHPOINT: Heading in the wrong direction
A study released last week by the Tax Foundation reported Indiana taxpayers saw one of the sharpest increases in tax burden since 2001. Dig deeper and the numbers are more alarming.
RONN MOTT: They didn’t make it!
The “One and Dones” done went and didn’t! (I know this is grammatically incorrect, but I want those folks down in Kentucky to read it.)
EDITORIAL: Dealing with eroded trust
Our neighbors in Putnam County are understandably concerned, even outraged, over problems in their sheriff’s department. People have a right to expect their chief law-enforcement agency — one of the most important public institutions in any community — to operate professionally and effectively.
Readers’ Forum: April 17, 2014
• A blessing from our young folks
• Confidence in judge candidate
EDITORIAL: Preparing for voting changes
The primary election, during which Hoosiers will traipse to their polling places to select party candidates to fill the ballot for the general election, is now three weeks away.
Readers’ forum: April 16, 2014
• Mott’s rant on global warming
• Salvation through the Indian way
RONN MOTT: Royce Waltman
In recent days the papers have been full of good things about Royce Waltman. Not a lot of puffery, but more like Royce himself… straight, true and right at you.
LIZ CIANCONE: Not much peace since war to end all wars
My jaw dropped the other day when I read that this year, 2014, marks 100 years since the start of World War I. No, you wise guys, I wasn’t there personally.
Readers’ Forum: April 15, 2014
Sound choice for county judge
Giving your car the care it needs
Park restrooms should be open
EDITORIAL: Noteworthy in the news (Honors for outstanding women)
Honors for outstanding women
Sprucing up around the wetlands
You can say that again
Reader Poll results
Readers’ Forum: April 14, 2014
Alternatives to ‘injustice’
EDITORIAL: Teaming up to fight the ugliness of graffiti
Graffiti hurts the Terre Haute community. It deflates property values and local pride. It literally paints an image of carelessness on the city.
MARK BENNETT: It’s (Not) So Easy
Arctic air bled into the Wabash Avenue post-hippie-era diner-pub every time the wooden door swung open.
ERIC SCHANSBERG: The 1040 tax form turns 100
The 16th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution brought us the federal income tax in 1913. A year later, the 1040 tax form was born.
Readers’ Forum: April 13, 2014
• An attack of hypocrisy
• New jail not a good idea
• Thinking about the next election
• Being positive a tremendous asset
• Work status a matter of value
FLASHPOINT: Time to fix government
In 1965, the chairman of the powerful Ways and Means Committee, Wilbur Mills, brought legislation establishing Medicare and Medicaid to the floor of the U.S. House. That was my first year in Congress, and I remember vividly the moment when Mills came to the Democratic caucus to explain his plans.
Death Notice: April 13, 2014
GUEST EDITORIAL: Despite high court ruling, big money may not guarantee election success
The Supreme Court has taken the predictable next step in the wake of its 2010 Citizens United decision in which it lifted the limit on donations wealthy donors can make to certain political entities.
RONN MOTT: Pondering our planet’s future
I watched a TV show recently and the subject was global warming.
EDITORIAL: Warm thoughts for Waltman
When Royce Waltman left Indiana State University as its head basketball coach in 2007, there was a sense of disappointment in the community that covered a broad spectrum.
Readers' Forum: April 11, 2014
• An appeal for organic farming
• Kesler best choice for judge position
RONN MOTT: Bits & Pieces
I don’t know about you, but I get a total sense of helplessness when I realize 239 people died in one airplane crash. And to make it worse, if that is possible, the loved ones left behind can’t close. Maybe this week.
EDITORIAL: Road work season requires motorists’ undivided attention
Spring’s budding flowers, trees and grasses are not the only colorful eye candy popping up on the west-central Indiana landscape. Those orange barrels and pylons common to construction areas are appearing as well.
Readers' Forum: April 10, 2014
• Appreciation for writer’s views
• Amazed by policy on birth control
EDITORIAL: Dangers lurking among us
Hardly a week goes by without multiple stories being published in this newspaper detailing the arrests, court proceedings, convictions or sentencings of individuals involved in sex crimes against children or young teens. It’s a disturbing trend that underscores the ever-present dangers that exist where we may least expect them.
- Readers' Forum: April 9, 2014
RONN MOTT: Basketball and Done
I guess I’m going to have to change my mind about the “One and Done” rule. It would seem the future professionals wearing university uniforms — national runner-up Kentucky is an example — has proven me a fool. Why should I care about the education they are getting, or not getting?
LIZ CIANCONE: Angling for a mate not fond of fishing
While many little girls daydream about the dream man they hope to find, it seems to me that they concentrate on all the wrong things. I can’t discount the appeal of beauty, brains and virtue, but my dream man was one who was not dedicated to fishing.
- More Opinion Headlines
- RONN MOTT: Spring activities settle into northside park