Video by John S. Quarterman for Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange (LAKE), Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia, 18 October 2012.
I think right now we need to look at solar.
The two new nuclear reactors probably shouldn’t be built right now.
You look at the wholesale power rate curves,
and where it’s most expensive, and it’s during peak hours.
Wholesale power is 50 cents a kilowatt-hour,
and the electric companies are buying at wholesale rates,
What do we need to offset that with?
We’ve got something to do that with: solar.
The cost has come so far down that that’s something
we should be spending our money on rather than
than building nuclear reactors right now.
David A. Staples
running for the Georgia Public Service Commission for District 5,
talked about the ethical conflicts of the incumbents who take
almost all of their campaign contributions from people associated
with the utilities they regulate.
Then he mentioned that the new nuclear reactors Georgia Power
is building for Southern Company at Plant Vogtle
another $3.5 billion in cost overruns coming.
The Georgia Sierra Club sent a questionnaire to all candidates for
Georgia Public Service Commission.
None of the incumbents answered.
The two challengers did.
Here’s the one from
David A. Staples for District 5.
As a Candidate for Public Service Commission, what is your
campaign strategy for achieving 50% +1 of the votes cast?
[I’m omitting the answers to this question. -jsq]
How should the Public Service Commission consider and weight the
impacts to community
health (asthma, cancer rates, etc.) and on Georgia’s environmental
(water quantity, air quality
etc.) when making decisions about a utility’s generation portfolio?
Impacts to community health and the environment have to be considered
very carefully. I know
there are a number of different ways of viewing the situation but the
explanation I’ve found
that works best with Republicans in trying to get their support is that
it comes down to a private
property matter. The right to swing ones fist ends at the other
person’s nose. Does anyone have
the right to pollute the air that I breathe or the water that I drink?
If I buy a piece of property for
instance along the Savannah River or Ogeechee River, does someone
upstream from me have
the right to pollute the water that then flows onto my land, carrying
those pollutants with it?
One of the most frequent topics that comes up in political
conversation these days is ethics. On July 31st, Georgians
overwhelmingly voted that there needs to be a cap on the amount of
gifts our elected officials are allowed to accept. However, there
are many of us who believe that even a $100 per day cap is still too
much—that perhaps $0 is a better cap. After all, looking at
the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission
website, one can see that while the $150 rounds of golf and several
hundred dollar dinners for the official and their spouse may be
eliminated, there are many more of the smaller lunches, dinners, and
various other goodies that would still be allowed. Would you be
surprised to hear that some Public Service Commissioners walk out of
their office or a hearing at lunch time and say “I’m hungry, where’s
However, there is one completely legal process by which we can
eliminate all gifts
At least they had primary opposition, and there’s still the general election in which to challenge the Georgia PSC incumbents. Even the incumbents aren’t defending coal anymore. Keep up the pressure and maybe they’ll finally get us solar and wind energy, or, even better, we’ll elect someone who will. Steve Oppenheimer and David Staples are running in the general election.