I know … I could hardly believe it myself when I stumbled onto it, but the evidence was right there in black and white. Imagine my surprise when I found that Dr. Wayne Spiggle and the American Wind Energy Association shared skepticism for the wind business. You could have knocked me over with a turbine blade.
And it came courtesy of wind industry spokesman Frank Maisano. Yep, right in the middle of his personal attack on Dr Spiggle, Mr. Maisano led his statement that “grid operators are happy to take as much wind as possible” as a “good sign that Spiggle is off the mark” with this little ditty: “no one — except the tried and true opponents — has ever claimed that wind would supplant coal or nuclear … !”
Let me repeat, “no one — except the tried and true opponents — has ever claimed that wind would supplant coal or nuclear.” Darn, I thought … this is important stuff! Frank Maisano is not only a wind industry spokesman but “a skilled media specialist with a track record of success.” He even uses words like supplant! I would probably have said replace or, maybe displace.
Anyway, as luck would have it, I was educating myself over at the AWEA web site and, sure enough, there it was: “Since substantial amounts of coal and natural gas fuels would be displaced, the 20% Win scenario could reduce CO2 emissions …” Needless to say, I thought this was a fluke. But then I checked further at the AWEA site and, sure enough: “Coal – which wind directly replaces.” WOW!
Imagine my surprise when even the National Renewable Energy Lab made Mr. Maisano’s “opposition list” with this statement: “conclusions are that reductions in spending on fossil fuels that will come from replacing coal-fired electricity with wind generated power.”
Just to be sure I didn’t misunderstand Mr. Maisano I checked out Merriam Webster and, sure enough: Supplant synonyms: cutout, displace, displant, relieve, substitute, supersede, replace
I can’t say for sure that Dr. Spiggle will be thrilled with his new found compatriots, but he’s a very amiable fellow and will probably reach out to them to find other common ground.
And, oh yeah … our thanks to Frank Maisano for putting these folks together.
Am I making fun? Yes, but to prove a point that engaging in a verbal dance to attack someone does not further the education of the taxpayers and consumers who ultimately have to pay for the industrial wind adventure. It is far more productive to discuss facts. People who challenge your intentions deserve no less respect than your allies.
We have invited Mr. Maisano to put away the narrative and participate in a discussion of facts. We’ll wait to see if it materializes, although I don’t hold out much hope. And that is unfortunate, because the reason Dr. Spiggle and his “merry handful” continue to ask questions is simply because they have not been adequately addressed.