Letters: Sustainability in Breckenridge
October 3, 2017
The path to sustainability for Breckenridge
On Sept. 28, Summit Daily reported on the additional signatures and obstacles surrounding the Breckenridge 100 percent renewable energy campaign. I applaud these efforts by the renewable energy campaign members and the town of Breckenridge. However, as a Breckenridge citizen and signatory to the 100 percent renewable energy campaign, I am worried the town and the campaign are missing two key components to realizing Breckenridge clean energy goals.
The first is efficiency. The town has cited the unknown future cost of renewable energy development as an impediment to signing the 100 percent renewable energy commitment. Some new renewable energy facilities will be needed, that much is for sure. However, instead of simply meeting current energy needs with new energy developments, the town should invest more in energy efficiency measures. By lowering the overall energy requirements of the town, it becomes cheaper and easier to achieve 100 percent renewable energy.
The second is storage. In the article on the 28th, both the town and campaign cite the need for Xcel to improve their overall energy use to achieve the 100 percent renewable energy goals. By working with Xcel on pricing structures, it can become financially feasible to install large electrochemical and smaller thermal batteries, particularly at current and future renewable energy sites. In doing so, the town can become more independent from Xcel by using their own renewable energy rather than simply improving Xcel's energy mix and receiving credit.
Between improved efficiency measures and storage, the entire town could achieve 100 percent renewable energy use more easily. By looking at the town's energy needs holistically rather than simply adding more renewable energy, Breckenridge can enjoy a clean energy future cheaply and quickly.
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The costs of renewable push
According to the Summit Daily News, the 100 percent Renewable Campaign has significant support. We haven't seen its petition. Does it promise that this transition will be at no cost to the consumer, as Ms. Beth Groundwater promised in her letter to the SDN editor on Aug. 31? No town resolution asserts that and, frankly, we don't believe it. Our principal concern is that we will see increased cost, primarily to middle-class residents who already struggle to pay their bills. Will you make that promise in any resolution that you pass? If you do, we will drop our opposition. If not, why not?
Gretchen and Robert Dudney
In response to the letter from Silvio Calabi pining about missing the protests of the '60s, please note that President Trump recently made the exact same warning to North Korea that President Kennedy made to Russia about the Bay of Pigs in Cuba. President Trump's vice-president Mike Pence is actually a successful former Indiana governor and not an embarrassing senator from Delaware. President Trump has gained Senate approval for one of the most brilliant legal minds in the country in Neil Gorsuch as a Supreme Court Justice. President Trump and his advisors under Kelly Anne Conway have managed to positively control the talking points of the liberal media for the past year while keeping Americans informed directly by the president with his well-advised tweets. President Trump has appointed more women and blacks like Linda Chavez and Ben Carson to run his cabinet bureaucracies than any previous president.
President Trump has not been shy about firing voices in his inner circle like Steve Bannon that detract from making America great again. Are these the "liars, creeps, thugs and thieves" that Calabi refers to in the Trump administration? I suppose Calabi wants us to go back to the '60s and worship sterling American patriots like Bill Ayers.
Chairman, Summit County Republicans
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