Rome, NY Sucks

I can't believe how many people want to be Mayor of Rome in 2015.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Power Lies

I have a couple of post ideas in the pipeline, but I thought I would weigh in on the biggest topic in the Mohawk Valley, NYRI. New York Regional Interconnect wants to build 200 miles of high voltage power lines from Marcy to Orange County. At 700 feet apart, that means 1500 towers 150 feet in the air transmitting 1200 Megavolts. That's 1.2 Gigavolts or 1.2 billion volts.

There are differing opinions of the meaning of this. Most think NYRI are evil bastards (Rock 107 went so far this morning as to imply the president of the company was Satan) who are on the way to being the next Enron. Some upstaters blame downstate and their hunger for our resources. Others see this as corporate greed that will hurt everyone. I think there's enough blame to go around.

First, there's New York City and downstate in general. Strikeslip points out that New York should consider using an almost fully built nuclear plant on Long Island. If that's not their cup of tea, how about wind farms or ocean current turbines? Interconnect is such a short term solution that the full capacity upstate will probably be tapped by upstate before the lines can be completed.

Let's not forget another timely issue. New York politicians bitterly complain about the lack of terror funds this year compared to past years. That money has been used mostly for police overtime, which may or may not be related to anti-terror activities. What is NYC doing to thwart terror now? I think one of the worst ideas is to build a 200 mile power cable running through miles of rural land to max out energy usage. How easy would it be for a terrorist from Canada (or Buffalo, for that matter) to wait for a hot day when air conditioning is at its peak and knock down one of those massive towers to create a 2003 Blackout level power interruption? Maybe they should have been using their terror money to put up renewables.

And let's not forget Utica, New Hartford, and the rest of the NYRI dead zone. It's true that Utica can do little about National Grid and whatever power plants they associate with from selling capacity to NYRI. Then again, a few short months ago, Utica and surrounding towns considered municipal power. Municipal power is free from a profit motive, rarely tied into a larger grid, are more reliable, less prone to blackouts and much cheaper. In this case, it is also owned by the community and therefore could tell any company that wants to put up a huge suction tube to stick it somewhere else.

If Tim Julian really wants to stop NYRI's plan, maybe he should reexamine that plan.


  • At June 06, 2006 8:40 PM, Blogger Biggus Dickus said…

    You raise a good point about NYRI's potential security vulnerabilities.

    The Marcy switching hub as it is now is already a choke-point for power transmission across the state and the northeast as a whole. There have already been concerns about how just a few men with scoped hunting rifles could wreak havoc on the system.

    Your friend forever,
    Biggus Dickus

  • At June 06, 2006 9:09 PM, Blogger RomeHater said…

    I would like to know any upside there is to this crazy plan. You know, aside from the 10 people who will make millions somehow.

  • At June 07, 2006 8:32 AM, Blogger Rebecca said…

    I suppose the "upside" is that those 10 people will buy hundreds of people off to vote for Hillary and UpChuck.

  • At June 07, 2006 11:56 AM, Blogger NYCO said…

    "How easy would it be for a terrorist from Canada (or Buffalo, for that matter) to wait for a hot day when air conditioning is at its peak and knock down one of those massive towers to create a 2003 Blackout level power interruption?"

    THANK YOU! To me, that security risk is glaringly obvious.

    Of course, you're probably going to be put on the NSA's Threatdown List for even bringing it up.

  • At June 07, 2006 8:05 PM, Blogger Roman Hokie said…

    I think we should sell off the city (and Long Island), make it the 51st state and call it either East New Jersey or South Connecticut.... Let those parasites fend for themselves. Then we wouldn't have to worry about Billary.


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