Wind farms could boost our post-Diablo economy

As your Feb. 4 editorial, “Wind farms could be banned off the Central Coast,” points out, it’s hard to believe that offshore wind turbines would interfere with U.S. Naval operations but drilling platforms wouldn’t.

The Central Coast has two golden opportunities to replace the energy, jobs and tax revenue that will be lost when the Diablo Canyon plant closes.

One of these is to implement a Community Choice Energy (CCE) program that would let PG&E customers choose to direct their monthly energy bill payments toward investments in wind and solar.

The other opportunity: Multiple wind energy providers are eager to exploit our massive offshore wind resources. Supervisor Bruce Gibson has pointed out that a 1-gigawatt wind farm could generate $100 million of economic activity and make good use of existing distribution infrastructure at the Morro Bay and Diablo Canyon power plants.

The CCE feasibility study was blocked by a 3-2 vote of the Board of Supervisors. And the Navy is accustomed to having free run of the California coastline from Mexico to the Bay Area. Both of these obstacles can be overcome with forward-looking leadership.

CCE could help fund wind power development. We must work to make both visions a reality.

 

Wind farms could boost our post-Diablo economy, by Michael Segor, The Tribune, February 15, 2018.

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