Friday, May 16, 2008

Palin's shortsighted energy plan

The Energy Debit Card is indeed as described, a short-term pain reducer. It "can only be used for energy purchases from authorized energy vendors in Alaska, such as electric utilities, natural gas utilitie, heating oil distrubtors, gas stations, and other retail fueling stations." It has a limit of $100 per month. So, in effect, it will do nothing for the long or even medium term, and it certainly won't reduce the actual costs of energy.

And what about those who would like to invest in, say, triple-pane thermally insulated windows to replace their leaky double-paned or single-paned windows? (Don't laugh--there are people in Anchorage living in houses that have single-paned windows—I've seen them with my eyes. This month.) Or maybe buy some insulation? This energy card can't be used for that kind of thing, or on long-life low-energy florescent lightbulbs, or all in one chunk on, say, solar heaters or small wind turbines.

What about those of us who (I blush) forgot to fill out our PFD forms in time? or who chose not to fill them out? or who haven't been here quite long enough to qualify for a PFD? Or those who make so much money that they really don't need a handout from the state for something like this? There's no qualifications regarding income level.

I'm sorry, Governor Palin, but I think this energy card idea is seriously flawed. If you're going to give out money to the public to deal with energy costs, then do it in such a way that it reaches those who really need it, and encourage (or at least allow!) them to conserve energy and use renewable energy sources. This is just a way of giving cash back to the oil and coal companies, ultimately, and doesn't help solve the actual problem.

1 comment:

Coldfoot said...

My apologies for mis-spelling your name.