All citizens of Lowndes County and any other interested parties are encouraged to attend the Biomass Forum Monday night, hosted by the Valdosta-Lowndes County Industrial Authority, at 7:30 at the Conference Center.Forum? As in people will get time to get real questions answered? And the VLCIA might be interested in real input?
The authority has invited a half-dozen individuals to speak, which will last approximately 60 to 90 minutes, followed by “ample” time for questions to be answered, at least 30 minutes, according to the Authority.Hm, 3 to 1 they speak we listen. Interesting definition of “forum”. Also, despite VLCIA’s many complaints that people didn’t get involved early enough in their previous public meetings about this plant, if this event is listed on VLCIA’s own website, I can’t find it. It’s not on the VLCIA’s facebook page, either.
Although on November 10th there are two VLCIA facebook posts saying:
The Industrial Authority stands behind its decision for the construction of Wiregrass Power LLC and feels like this green project will be a win/win for the community.So much for looking for input.
Anyway, back to the VDT:
The Times has presented several stories with facts concerning the $140 million project, which will generate 20 to 25 local jobs once the plant is up and running.20 to 25 local jobs.
Meanwhile, in other places that have a plan:
- MAGE SOLAR is already hiring in Dublin, Georgia for the first of 350 jobs in a photovoltaic (PV) solar manufacturing plant.
- Suniva of Norcross’s second PV plant with its 500 jobs went to Michigan, because nobody in Georgia tried very hard to keep it here.
- Solar Valley, Michigan, has a plan that has already brought in thousands of clean energy jobs, in addition to Suniva.
- Where’s our major solar generating plant?
- Our solar academy?
- Our solar manufacturing plant?
- Our house retrofitting strategy?
- Our local agritourism map?
- Our reforestation plan, with twice as many jobs as biomass?
And I agree with the VDT on this:
And to the Industrial Authority and invited speakers, you are urged to not insult the intelligence of those attending. They understand what the plant will do. What they want to know is how this will affect them in terms of health issues, air quality and safety, burning sewage, the number of trucks on the highway so close to several schools, etc.More to the point, why is the VLCIA wasting its political capital (and our tax dollars) on this one polluting plant when it could be working to bring in real clean energy?
The onus is on you, the Authority, to handle this in a much more professional manner than the last Sterling project.
Does the VLCIA have a plan to raise the local metro area out of the bottom 10 for wages? Or is this 20-25-job polluting plant the best the VLCIA can do?
If you can’t come to tonight’s “forum”, or even if you can, here is contact information for your elected and appointed officials, including the VLCIA board.