Saturday, December 20, 2008

Go Obama

It is clear president-elect Obama is not going to follow the Bush administration's approach to Climate Change by burying his head in the sand.

Yesterday Obama appointed four scientists to top posts in his future administration. His Science adviser will be Harvard Physicist, John Holdren; Jane Lubchenko, a Marine Biologist, will head NOAA-leading government studies on Climate Change.

Both Holdren and Lubchenko are recognized experts on Climate Change and have advocated a forceful government response.

Fierce storms continue to pound parts of the US. Another 250 million people are out of power in the midwest following record snowfalls. That storm just clipped us here in Maine last night, dropping another 3 inches of powder through single-digit temperatures.

Not so with another storm headed our way tomorrow-that one is lining up to be a real NOr'Easter with significant snowfall. I didn't catch snowfall predictions, but I am assuming that means at least a foot of snow.

That one is sure to hurt retailers, already sufferring from a slack economy. Less folks will be out shopping this last weekend before Christmas when travelling is treacherous.

Speaking of the economy, Obama is reported to have a plan to create jobs by rebuilding infrastructure. Here's an idea: Why not use that infrastructure money to lay underground utility lines for the Northern half of the country? So many people suffer, and will continue to suffer, as these fierce storms tear down power lines. The utility companies just can't keep up-some folks in New Hampshire are still down following last week's ice storm.

Not only that, but then the utility companies pass on those repair costs to the customers in delivery charges, often exceeding the cost of power itself-more than doubling the cost to the consumer.

The government should take over the power infrastructure-we are paying for it anyhow-and do it right. Lay underground pipes and cable. Once those are in place, the upkeep will be minimal, and consumers are guaranteed to have a consistent source of power even during violent weather. Who isn't tired of hearing the power companies claim that installing underground lines isn't cost efficient? It must be more efficient to hire tree crews to annually trim trees and pay emergency crews overtime to leave customers out in the cold for days.

Step it up, Obama, and set them straight.

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