New Jersey

Better to see wind turbines than more nukes | Letters

Paul Mulshine stays true to his nature in his recent column, Gov. Murphy has a huge problem with his offshore energy plan.”

Mulshine worries more about his view of the sea from his home than he does about the healthy climate of the planet. He’s offended by the shrapnel in his eye from a distant wind turbine, but since he supports more nuclear power, he’s quite content with thousands of tons of useless spent nuclear fuel piling up with no safe disposal option. Maybe he could offer his beach for that.

Mulshine goes on to discuss the horrific toll on whales that could occur despite a report in the same newspaper suggesting that whales have been washing ashore for some time before turbines are even built. The columnist did not call for a halt to maritime shipping, which is known to have seriously injured or killed many whales. He has not called for stopping the fishing industry, whose nets often entangle whales and scoop up the fish they eat. And of course, as the climate continues to warm, the water temperature the whales need and the location of the fish they eat will change.

Then there are the birds, the poor birds that fly into the turbine blades – just as they do into airplane engines, skyscrapers and even suburban windows. Logically, we should also eliminate these dangers.

How about hunters firing their shotguns to kill unknown thousands of innocent ducks, geese, pheasants, quail and the like? At least let them use guns to give the birds a fair chance. I don’t think Mulshine has thought through his position as clearly as usual.

Jack Colldeweih, Somerset

There’s a reason nuclear weapons are gone

I read Paul Mulshine’s offshore wind column. I’ll let him quibble about location issues and the possible lack of transparency in the governor’s actions, but I have to put the brakes on him and the Avian Extinction Rebellion supporting nuclear development.

Has Mulshine heard of Three Mile Island, Chernobyl or Fukushima? These meltdowns were caused by poor design, operator error, or events such as an earthquake followed by a tsunami. Do I want more nuclear weapons to be built? Do the electricity suppliers?

After the Three Mile Island debacle in 1979, there were attempts to build new nuclear weapons in America. They basically failed as the cost overruns became unbearable. France, with one of the largest nuclear facilities in the world, is now trying to fix apparent design flaws.

PSE&G stopped building nuclear weapons when cost overruns prompted the state to step in and limit the costs that were passed on to all New Jersey consumers. Just as US utilities halted construction of new coal-fired capacity, they realized that generating electricity from nuclear power posed far too many risks.

What do we do with the spent nuclear fuel then? The Yucca Mountain deposit was developed to handle the spent rods in a deep underground facility. Technical problems and political resistance have rendered this facility inoperable. Nuclear fuel rods are now stored in ponds at decommissioned and currently operating power plant sites.

Does nuclear power look that attractive, Paul?

Bruce H. Hoff, Edison

Don Quixote did not oppose wind turbines

I am appalled that journalists use the term “windmills” to describe wind turbines used to provide renewable energy. Can they call themselves responsible journalists?

Compare photos to see the difference between the two. I read Paul Mulshine’s last column on the subject. As soon as I came up with the word “windmill” I stopped.

If someone uses a term that dates back to 1200, it only proves that they are living in the past. Way to the past! And he didn’t read up on modern technology.

Joseph Chiarell, Somerville

The cartoonist’s comparison is discharged

The Star-Ledger published another ridiculous anti-Republican political cartoon by Drew Sheneman.

This one portrayed Republicans angrier at a Democratic regulator wanting to ban gas stoves (on pollution and health grounds) than at a 6-year-old with a gun.

It has been reported that at least 60% of New Jersey homes use gas stoves. Not even a tiny 1% of 6-year-olds bring a loaded gun to school.

You would think that both Republicans and Democrats would be concerned about a possible ban that could increase operating costs. I don’t find it funny, I find it sickening that the Democrats are again paying attention to their special interests instead of the people they claim to represent.

A 6 year old with access to a firearm is a parenting issue and should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Claiming that legal, responsible gun owners have to give up their guns because of a couple of abandoned parents makes about as much sense as making marijuana illegal again because an underage child ended up in his parents’ hideout.

Armand Rose, North Arlington

Two utilities are better than one

Regarding articles banning gas stoves, the move to ban new ones is part of a larger, dubious trend to phase out natural gas supplies from new builds in favor of buildings that rely solely on electricity.

Such bans, already in place in some US cities and proposed for New York State, severely disadvantage occupants of such buildings during a power outage.

Electrical distribution systems are prone to occasional outages, particularly during storms. A natural gas connection means you can cook dinner and take a hot shower with the lights off.

Paul J Starkey, Cranford

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