- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 17, 2001

William Rusher´s insulting diatribe against those who value what many believe are God´s creation betrays his utter lack of understanding about how the planet actually works (“Blundering of the green machine,” Commentary, April 6). Mr. Rusher should know that eliminating insects from our planet would be as catastrophic as a nuclear disaster, precipitating a chain reaction culminating in our own demise.

Contrary to Mr. Rusher, the environmentalists did not cause California´s rolling blackouts. Rather, the loud-voiced industry lobbyists and their greedy clients pushed through an unworkable deregulation bill, which resulted in the blackouts. Furthermore, California did indeed construct 4,010 megawatts of new power-plant capacity between 1990 and 2000, but most of this generation is now off-line because the big utilities reneged on their bills.

In 1994, California utilities strongly resisted the addition of 1,200 megawatts of power from industrial cogeneration and renewable sources, measures that were strongly supported by environmentalists and the California Energy Commission. Ultimately, the utilities made an appeal to the federal government to keep the plants from being built. If they had followed the prescription of environmentalists, the lights would have stayed on.

Despite Mr. Rusher´s claims, strident exaggerations and untruths about the environment are losing popularity, not environmentalists. When it comes to a choice between big polluters and the panda, I think it is clear where most people´s hearts are.


LINDA GUNTER

Communications director

Safe Energy Communication Council

Washington

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