Utilties Turn the Lights Off on the Truth Behind Transmission Lines

Coulee Region won’t benefit from new transmission lines

The following article comes from the  LaCrosseTribune.com, and was co-written by Rob Danielson of SOUL (Save Our Unique Lands) and Debra Severson of the Citizens Energy Task Force.

Those questioning the need for new high-voltage transmission lines agree with the Coalition Organized for Reliable Energy and Wisconsin Restaurant Association that Wisconsin needs to ensure every home, farm and business has access to reliable electricity.

But power line opponents dispute claims made by these groups — both of which recently came out in support of the Badger Coulee project — that these transmission lines will produce a significant number of long-term jobs and result in lower electric bills.

The first thing we need to understand is who needs these lines and why.

Transmission expansion is being approved to help utilities compete in a shrinking market. By adding more and more lines, utilities get increased access to “more reliably” trade electrons across the country in a stock-market-like system called the wholesale energy market….



Wisconsin Restaurant Association Puts Transmission Lines on Its Menu

Ed Lump writes in the La Crosse Tribune. com

State’s economy gets boost from power projects

“The Wisconsin Restaurant Association is part of a coalition of groups that support the proposed Badger Coulee transmission line project. We often take for granted having reliable power for our homes and businesses, but for the restaurant industry and others, the stakes are too high to stand on the sidelines. What do restaurants have to do with power lines you may ask? Imagine this hypothetical: It is a Saturday night at a busy restaurant in Wisconsin, and the power goes out. No food can be cooked. No dishes can be washed. The large investment in meat and produce that each restaurant makes on a daily basis is very quickly becoming worthless as time ticks on….”

One has to wonder if Wisconsin ratepayers are being served a very bad meal…..



Coalition Organized for Reliable Energy – Who Are They?

“We, the undersigned, support the benefits that an improved transmission infrastructure will bring to Wisconsin. The organizations listed below represent a diverse group of businesses,
labor unions, economic development organizations and trade associations, and each has a direct stake in Wisconsin energy issues. We recognize the need for a transmission system that can ensure the delivery of reliable electricity to businesses and customers, facilitate commerce, promote competition in the regional energy marketplace and help deliver renewable energy to Wisconsin customers. The American Transmission Company (ATC) and Xcel Energy have engaged with stakeholders like us throughout its transmission planning process and we support their efforts to address Wisconsin’s need for an improved electrical grid….”
So says CORE, the Coalition Organized for Reliable Energy. Want to know who signed on to this position? Take a look here.


Wisconsin PSC – misplaced power

It doesn’t seem sensible that three individuals can negatively impact so many property owners across Wisconsin and hold their health, welfare, and well-being in their hands by having statutory power to approve transmission line mania in Wisconsin, but that’s the truth of it. Seem fair to you? Take a read of this enlightening article from The La Crosse Tribune.

Outsider: The PSC has never turned down a transmission line

North America’s love affair with transmission lines

Bill Howley writes….

If you want to see really high density HV transmission, drive to Montreal.  There are huge lines all over the place on the south bank of the St. Lawrence.  And they are all because of Hydro Quebec’s huge, and I mean huge, hydropower system in northern Quebec.  If you are ever in Quebec City, go to the Quebec Museum there.  Hydro Quebec give them gazillions of dollars and got a big wing of its own to tout its hydro power developments on land and waters they stole from the Cree back in the 1960s and 1970s.  Strangers Devour the Land is an excellent account of this theft.

I’m a big fan of hydro power, but this is exactly what is happening now with Big Wind.  Big development of renewable resources must always happen in areas where the basic resource is maximized, because big, centralized development is so expensive.  That means exploiting high resource areas and, because these areas have relatively low population density, building massive transmission to reach high load areas.

Read more about North America’s love affair with transmission lines at The Power Line.