Comment from Stewart, Margaret Macdonald

Northwest Power and Conservation Council members, My name is Margaret Macdonald Stewart and I've lived in Ketchum, Idaho for 38 years. After reading much of your recent draft Power Plan I have only a few things to say. First of all, BRAVO, for taking the step forward into the real future where we MUST rely on renewable energy sources to drive our country's future energy needs. I applaud the Council's stating that all Pacific Northwest energy needs in the next 20 years can be met with no net increase in greenhouse gas emissions and without construction of any new fossil fuel power plants. Emphasizing efficiency, conservation and renewable energy puts us in the same class as many European countries that are galaxies ahead of the U.S. in terms of sane and intelligent energy production. I do think the draft plan should push its own envelope - THINK BIG - and in the 5 year action plan it should aim to reduce current emissions by requiring at least 1450 average megawatts of conservation instead of 1200 megawatts. What do we all have to lose with this proposal? I also think there should be some mention of the need to educate the public about the "visual impacts" of wind turbines/farms. People in Europe have been living with wind turbines for decades and their tourism and daily lives have not suffered from these structures. No one seems to bicker and complain about the "unsightly" power poles or telephone poles that line every road and highway in the country. And no one seems to mind the hundreds of thousands of miles of "unsightly" tarmac rolled out into every corner of our country to ease our need to get somewhere. The Danes think wind turbines are beautiful because they remind them that fossil fuels are a thing of the past and their energy comes with no harmful emissions. Congrats on a pretty good draft plan. Now just step a bit further on the energy production limb and go for 1450 conservation megawatts! Margaret Macdonald Stewart