Letter to the editor: Wind and solar energy are unreliable along with Knopf
Susan Knopf’s column on greenhouse gasses contains factual inaccuracies and recommends bad legislation.
Knopf believes we can reduce carbon emissions without nuclear power. Untrue. Workhorse carbon emitting coal and natural gas plants produce electricity 24 hours a day, 364 days a year. If you want the lights to go on when you hit the switch, you need reliable electricity. Fossil and nuclear plants are reliable. Wind and solar generation are not. They produce electricity only when the sun shines and the wind blows. To ensure reliability, every kilowatt of wind and solar must be backed up by fossil or nuclear generation.
Knopf advocates taxing fossil generators who provide reliable electricity but not taxing subsidized deep pocket wind and solar developers. She’d let politicians give tax proceeds to people living in undefined “vulnerable” or “marginalized” communities who “disproportionately suffer the cost of pollution.” These could include beachfront playgrounds of the rich and famous. Even Gov. Jared Polis opposes that.
Knopf claims nuclear power cannot replace fossil because there is “no viable academic program” to support U.S. nuclear development. Untrue. Universities like MIT, Texas A&M, Berkeley and Wisconsin make the U.S. the world leader in nuclear engineering.
Knopf claims the nuclear waste issue “was never really solved.” Untrue. By federal law, all the spent nuclear fuel ever produced in the U.S. is safely stored at reactor sites where it will remain until it is moved to a long-term repository or recycled to make more nuclear fuel.
Knopf praises Xcel Energy’s plan to reduce carbon emissions but fails to mention that Xcel has nuclear power plants, will continue to operate them and will build more to replace fossil plants.
Knopf’s pro-renewable, anti-nuclear approach will increase electric system carbon emissions, reduce reliability and increase cost.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.
Now more than ever, your financial support is critical to help us keep our communities informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having on our residents and businesses. Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.
Your donation will be used exclusively to support quality, local journalism.