Suing local businesses helps run up fees to the county attorney, says County Manager Joe Pritchard. He didn’t mention that continuing to promote sprawl for example through the county’s thoroughfare plan also runs up fees that property taxes will never meet. Commissioners seemed very concerned about “stakeholders” whom they said were “the development community, the real estate community” and “the construction and homebuilder industries”. Maybe somewhere they mentioned the agricultural and forestry industries, or sales tax payers even if they don’t own real estate; if so I missed it. At least they’re thinking about the Comprehensive Plan and the general direction of the county in a public forum. And the County Planner did talk about quality of life. Plus it seems business prospects bringing that up got the attention of the County Manager. They said they have a responsiblity to set the direction of the county. How about instead of continuing to drive sprawl outwards, which is a fiscally (and environmentally) irresponsible path, turn to directing development to be more dense in already-developed areas? They continue this morning at 8:30 AM, and Gretchen is there again with the LAKE video camera.
BP must be getting desperate about people catching onto what they did to the Gulf. A BP video ad has been replaying itself every few minutes beside various news stories since yesterday, claiming two years after the oil disaster (“spill” doesn’t describe it) “the beaches are open for everyone to enjoy!” BP’s website says “We are helping economic and environmental restoration efforts in the Gulf Coast as part of our ongoing commitment to the region following the Deepwater Horizon accident in 2010”. Neither the ad nor the website says BP actually cleaned up the oil. Because they didn’t. It’s still there, as is the even more toxic “dispersant” Corexit BP dumped on top of the oil to make it sink. Both are busily poisoning dolphins, fish, birds, and humans.
Antonia Juhasz wrote for The Nation 7 May 2012, Investigation: Two Years After the BP Spill, A Hidden Health Crisis Festers,Continue reading
The world’s worst nuclear disaster at Fukushima in Japan has had economic effects on nuclear-owning power utilities. What will happen to the Southern Company as Georgia Power customers and U.S. taxpayers get tired of paying for cost overruns which are already almost a billion dollars?
Erik Kirschbaum wrote for Reuters 26 May 2012, Germany sets new solar power record, institute says,
The German government decided to abandon nuclear power after the Fukushima nuclear disaster last year, closing eight plants immediately and shutting down the remaining nine by 2022.
And closing those nuclear plants caused German electric utility E.ON to lay off up to 11,000 staff, to take its first quarterly loss in a decade, and to cut its shareholder dividend. According to Forbes, E.ON in 2006 was the biggest electric utility in the world (and TEPCO, owner of the Fukushima nuclear plants, was number 6). In March 2012, E.ON was number 22. (TEPCO dropped from number 6 to number 45.) Southern Company (SO) jumped from number 16 in 2006 to number 6 this year, quite possibly because E.ON and TEPCO and others dropped so rapidly.
Hm, I wonder what Southern Company’s nukes, already almost $1 billion over budget, will do to SO’s ranking in Forbes’ list of top utilities? Maybe there’s a reason Moody’s called nuclear “a bet-the-farm risk”. What will SO do when this big nuclear bet goes bad? And how big a bill do Georgia Power customers and we the taxpayers want to let SO run up that we’ll get stuck with?