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Quote by Wallace Stevens.

In my case, Bloom is obviously referencing the new site occupying the railroad tracks on the site of the ex-Chrysler manufacturing plant. If you saw today’s News Journal, you probably saw the piece regarding the lawsuit being brought against it.

Sigh. I guess the election was the moon passing before the sun… a major drama extinguishing interest in the sunspots occupying the suns surface at the time…

(Explanation of that metaphor: a total eclipse is an unnerving event if ever experienced. However it does no damage as neither would the shadow of a passing cloud. However, our entire solar system and particularly our electrical, communications, and space technologies, live and die by explosive sunspot activities. Where and when a burst does occur, can have a profound impact upon us, far more severe than an eclipse in the Indian ocean off Australia might. But an eclipse will dominate our entire thought process, the same as our election blocked very important local matters from our view; matters that have far more effect on Delaware than says who wins the 4th or 19th Senate might.)

The complaint is filed by John Nichols, clone extrodinaire of the Caesar Rodney Foundation. This foundation is a quasi information function set up by unelectable Republican operatives to offer false evidence against scientific principals… They are primarily known for saying Global Warming is a hoax created by Al Gore because they have proof it has since snowed in Pakistan; no kidding here so yeah, you know the types.)

Bloom Energy wants to build a manufacturing spot on the East Coast… Their operation will probably be as big as the Chrysler operation was during its heyday. The equivalence of this in scale, is that if we had lived in the horse and buggy days (1911), and someone wanted to introduce a new technology to manufacture an item called the horseless carriage, we would probably have the ancestor of John Nichols, along with a company specializing in rubber buggy bumpers, around to interfere with the investment of THAT, too… (In other words, nuisance lawsuits are allowed by our Constitution although complaining against REAL progress as such, benefits no one.)

What are Bloom boxes? If you don’t know, here is an interesting video that fairly quickly explains not only how they work, but gives you the vision of just how important they can be if Delaware jumps on the bandwagon first….

The Bloom boxes create electricity while providing heat and hot water to neighboring businesses, and creates little pollution.

With that in focus, one can see that a vendetta against science of which John Nichols is the tip of the spear, is simply that. The use of false science conveniently made up by the Cesar Rodney Institute, to dismantle a viable economic program that actually has no real cost to John Nichols or anyone else…

Here is the complaint that was filed…. I should note it is being helped along by a major competitor of Bloom Energy, called FuelCell Energy, based out of Danbury, Connecticut. So in this odd combination, we have a non science proponent, teemed up conveniently with a competitor who gains prodigiously if Bloom is shut down. Instead of duking it out in the market place, FuelCell Energy has jumped on this case to metaphorically pull a King Herod, … kill all babies two years or less in Bethlehem…

The complaint has three legs.

The first is violation of the Commerce Clause. FuelCell cannot come in and compete.

The second is John Nichols is being forced to pay more to Delmarva for electricity than is market.

The third is equity issues. These charges would be paid by Delmarva customers but not by Tidewater or other company’s customers.

So we will respond to all three.

The first complaint is that REPSA (Renewable Energy Portfolio Standards Act) violates the commerce clause because it restricts unfettered business across state lines. This may appear worthy on the surface of such a claim, but this particular claim totally fails to justify how not regulating greenhouse gases was not in the interest of every state resident. In fact, the complaint does not mention the greenhouse equation at all. The REPSA was the legislature’s acknowledgement that considerable costs to society derive from its use of energy. Any accounting for one’s energy cost, in fairness must include the total cost to society, and not just the cost of the fuel…

Bluntly put as a rudimentary example. I could pour fuel oil into a hole dug in my backyard, set fire and keep it burning indefinitely. However, my fumes would sicken my neighborhood and spread for miles around. I might pay back some of those costs to society upon going to the hospital the next time I got sick, in paying them the higher fees that my risk had created… But in my own world, I could say, I’m free, this is cheap. In the larger picture, someone else is paying dearly for my freedom and my cheapness….

So, for those who know the players, it is obvious that this is little more than a philosophical measure being brought to penalize an imaginary enemy of “liberals”, who dared enable legislation that marginalizes profits of someone’s patron: the petrochemical companies…. It has nothing to do with John Nichols paying an extra dollar or of FuelCell being competitive.

Here is why. The Commerce Clause gives the Federal Government the right to regulate commerce between the states; (hence for future reference it will be called the “interstate commerce clause” here as is common practice.) The question in this case becomes: why would the Federal Government want to?

Doing so would disrupt a major economic deal in works, a big negative. It would prevent the gigantic manufacturing facility from being built, a big negative. It would eradicate the possibility of over a 1000 building and manufacturing jobs, lasting for at least 21 years, a big negative. It would delay the implementation of the Carbon Control program, a big negative. It would create environmental hardship, by continuing unabated the current CO2 levels possibly leading to higher oceans and storms like Sandy, a very big negative.

The argument being given in this complaint, states that FuelCell Energy, “could have” provided a competitive bid. But because of this legislation, it now cannot do so….

On the surface this may appear to have merit. However, once stepping back, it is laughable in its reality. Along the same lines as this argument, would we allow some of Middletown’s center city businesses to void their obligations on their legal requirements, simply because Wal*Mart moved and built a gigantic operation on the outside of town? Of course not! Timing of the signature on a contract, is a very important part of any equation.

In the perfect Conservative dreamworld, if FuelCell had competed at the time we were negotiating with Bloom and presented a lower rate, and had we not months ago signed an agreement with Bloom, (even though that still would have been within our prerogative), their case could be stronger. But to come suddenly too late, and say annul the agreement, is again, laughable based on the basic tenants of contract law. It would be as if married to my spouse, and suddenly a new prospect transfers into my employment, and angrily demands my marriage be annulled,… Why? …So they can have a fair, equal chance to compete… Uhh, excuse me, Honey; if you’d been here through the courtship, your pleas then could have been considered. But to annul a marriage just because “you didn’t get your chance”? As I said, in business such lawsuits are unfortunately allowed under the Constitution. So hopefully this one gets thrown out with no major expenses incurred by Delaware taxpayers.

The second plank of the complaint is that John Nichols will have to pay more for electricity than is the current market price. As mentioned above, his market in the case, is smaller than the market considered by REPSA. All health benefits, all savings due from clean energy, all savings from keeping the ocean as low as it is, all quality of life issues, are included in the cost under REPSA. Paying cheap fuel, then getting hit with a $250,000 medical bill is not cheaper, for anyone. Better to pay slightly more per kilowatt, and have NO medical bill! That is the wisdom behind REPSA.

REPSA is sanctioned by our government. It is the will of We, The People. John Nichols may not consider himself to share in the view of the majority of Delaware’s population. That is his right. However, we too, are under no obligation to also be forced to share the view of one crackpot minority. Global warming is real, and the majority acted to do something about it.

Secondly, the issues being brought by John to augment his case, would continue to be in place regardless of whether Bloom or FuelCell Energy was providing this same option. Costs would be closely the same. Pollution would be the same. The contract would be the same. If FuelCell had wanted a piece of this market, they should have made a cold call. The only difference between FuelCell and Bloom is jobs. Bloom will build a plant that hires 1000 people in Delaware for 21 years. FuelCell Energy builds its boxes in Connecticut. We will grow jobs there while spending the same cost we would be paying Bloom here….

As a state, “We the People” have the option to choose the best deal for ourselves. 1000 people working at $50,000 a year pumps, $50,000,000 into our economy. Over the course of twenty one years, a little over a trillion dollars will be plunked directly, infused into Newark’s economy. That investment must be coupled alongside any cost to determine what will be the true benefit Bloom Energy provides us, We the People who live in this state’s confines….

So when John says he will pay more for electricity, he is wrong because whoever takes Bloom’s place will charge him the same, yet the economic recovery which benefits everyone, would be absent. The net loss or cost, would be far more than John is complaining about now.

The final point of his complaint, is equity issues. John says the costs of this deal only apply to Delmarva Power customers. They won’t apply to those customers who opt out on one of the green plans Delmarva offers, or those on City power grids, or those on grids downstate under other private companies’ ownership.

Again, John is looking just at the surcharge. He is not counting the fact that Delmarva Power Customers pay less than do others whose grids have to buy smaller, higher priced amounts. Those entities lacking the negotiating power of Delmarva, pay more already. For John’s argument to have merit, the court must require all companies to charge all Delawareans the same. Despite that fact that regional distribution differences (it costs more to provide power further away from the source) would rather severely penalize the other companies. Therefore, because costs vary, if you decide that the other companies are to be “allowed” to charge what they need, then that same rule must also apply to Delmarva Power. It “needs” to charge more for Bloom energy.

John’s argument is just out of luck. On its merits alone, the court will decide to dismiss.

Now, let’s look at the extenuating factors.. This is the fun stuff. FuelEnergy just ten days ago, announce a huge deal with a South Korean consortium to provide fuel cells there. For it to make Delaware’s fuel cells, we would have to wait an awful long time.

FuelCell is rapidly becoming the monopoly in the fuel cell wars. John is playing right into their hands in reaching out to them to join him here. They would like nothing better than for Bloom to go out of business. Bloom is scheduled to begin returning on its investment this year…

Fuel Cells are tailor made for the East Coast. No pollution using cheap natural gas, they can be fired up providing electricity during peak times right where it is needed. When peak demand hits at 2:30 pm on a summers day, these boxes can kick on, easing the load of the grid, quietly, pollution free, no CO2, right where they are needed. In fact, one can imagine these boxes on top of skyscrapers, providing an entire building’s energy needs, as well as providing its heat, and hot water too. Putting a coal powered power plant in the heart of Manhattan is not an option. Yes, the demand is such; these boxes will sell….

Western State Connecticut University is powering such a building beginning December this year. In this article the University’s administration brings up their hope to teach fuel cell technology to their students. The proximity of Bloom to the University of Delaware, also creates the possibility of creating a hub of fuel cell technologies spinning of the Bloom plant and expert talent from the University.

Here is the op ed piece place in the Washington Times by John Nichols. Obviously it is a one side attempt in a business friendly paper to drum up support for getting rid of the Greenhouse Gas Initiatives. Bottom line: most people don’t want to give up and throw in the towel on global warming, especially if we can fix it for only pennies a day.

Here is a fuel cell up and running in Orange County California. It’s by-product is hydrogen which is used in gas stations to power hydrogen cars from LA to San Diego.

Here is what FuelCell Energy is working on in South Korea. It will be the largest fuel cell manufacturing plant of its kind. Soon, we may be giving our technology edge to Korea thanks to FuelCell Energy who is providing the expertise for this South Korean adventure.

Finally, the lawyer representing John Nichols and FuelCell Energy is part of a DC operation that tends to be one sided on their lawsuits. Cause of Action by its name alone, suggests a history of barrity… the legal equivelent of ambulance chasing.

I was more intrigued with Amber D Abbasi’s case here, than with the case on unsure footing she filed here in Delaware….. Again, the evidence there too does not decide in her favor. There is a valid reason two lesbians who want to artifically inseminate with a mutual friends sperm, must have it tested, whereas married heterosexual couples who already would have shared any risks of STD’s between, would not necessarily need to….

Bottom line, It is probably a good thing overall that this lawsuit over Bloom Energy was recently filed. Just to reiterate again to Delaware’s public (and prove Rick Jensen wrong) just how good this deal will be for all of Delaware as soon as it gets moving forward, barring anymore litigation from the Dinosaur’s Anonymous wing of the Anti-Global Warming Club.

Wow. For a small state, we sure got more than our fair share of kooks here, didn’t we?

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In recent years I have intervened in several cases involving Delmarva Power‘s rate increase requests filed before the Public Service Commission. The process  is cumbersome and complex; it requires resources and time that is not always available to me. Unfortunately without me, the public, the ratepayers, and my constituents interests have been inadequately represented in these proceedings.  My obligation and responsibility as an elected representative is to ensure some fairness in both the discussions and decisions rendered.

The most recent filing in which I have intervened is identified as PSC Docket # 11-528  and involves a request for rate increases which includes recovery of depreciation values by Delmarva for obsolete meters that have been replaced with “smart-meters” for Delmarva residential customers.  I, as the people’s representative,  objected to any ratepayer funding for any new technology costs such as advanced metering purchase and installation…  simply because… the economic benefit from these devices rests solely with the utility. I have adamantly opposed any recovery of “lost” depreciation for any obsolete equipment that is removed from service especially since there has been no substantiated breakdown of any economic loss to the utility!  And, absolutely no justification for any single ratepayer to subsidize this company’s loss.  Please read the most excellent News Journal article in the business section of Sunday’s (Oct. 21st) paper for its startling exposure.

The odd request by this utility has caused me to defend all ratepayers against  a system that has major flaws which can obstruct honest and fair due process. One identifiable flaw has been the palpable lack of enthusiasm from those entities required by law to represent the consumer! This leaves the average ratepayer at a huge disadvantage.

During the “evidentiary hearing”  I was given the privilege to represent ratepayers and to cross examine the witnesses from DP&L, PSC staff and the Public Advocates office.  I expended great effort to determine how the $25 million in  lost depreciation value  was calculated.  I asked how this numerical value was determined.., particularly when noted  that the average age of a discarded meter was 22 years yet the total life-expectancy was only 30 years.  Over 73% of the life-expectancy had already been consumed and that legally  should be prorated into any calculation. I also requested  the original equipment costs of 22 years ago.

Objections to my cross-examination were raised by both the attorneys’ for Delmarva Power and the Public Advocates office. They wrongly asserted that it was already in evidence admitted. Although my queries were made in a legitimate attempt to ascertain vital information, the objections were sustained by the Hearing Officer. I also asked for the amount of recovered equipment costs garnered from ratepayers over that 22 year span and the amount recovered during that time-span from “depreciation” tax credit recovery and I was rebuffed with the same objections. 

To date there is no valid, statistical accumulation of numbers which justify any $25 million recovery of lost depreciation revenue owed to Delmarva Power…  Its ratepayers have already paid many times over the cost  of those meters in the prior 22 years.  Many times. The approval process has too many flaws and all of them must be addressed by me, and my colleagues, in Dover beginning this upcoming January.  Trust me.  I will be working to assure corrective action is moving forward.

The harm in allowing Delmarva to recover unproven and unsubstantiated expenses from the ratepayers is a matter of immediate concern and should be denied by the PSC Commissioners. Any action short of total relief from this asking amounts to an abdication of the government’s obligation to ensure fairness for its citizens.

Sincerely:
John Kowalko

This is post number 2000.

The only real significance is it is 150 posts more than where Tommywonk stopped exactly one year and fifteen days ago…

If some future historian looks back, I can only guess they may kindly make some note of the quality of thought that underlies these efforts, but my guess, is no one will ever notice…

Irregardless, as long as the urge to put thoughts down for others continues, we will go on. As usual, with no goal, no direction, and no ulterior motive. Probably upon reflection, my biggest surprise, right here, right now … is that I still enjoy it so much, and can’t wait to jot my thoughts down, click the button, and send them off to where ever cyberspace and the vast internet ocean, lets them drift….

For each of you who have become regular over the years, … thank you friend…

Would any American support a law imposed on us by the Soviet Union?

Would any American support a law imposed on us by Communist China?

Would any American support a law imposed on us by Islamic Iran?

Would any American support a law imposed on us by Mexico?

Would any American support a law imposed on us by Canada?

Would any New Yorker support a law imposed on them by South Carolina?

Would any South Carolinian support a law imposed on them by New York?

Would any Delawarean support a law imposed on them by Alaska?

No?

When put in this perspective, the phrase…”it’s the law…” rings rather hollow…

It’s the law… of what? It’s the law of…. who? It’s the law decided by whom?…… What reference does this law have to me?

Such is every Americans feeling to corporate law… These laws were applied to the lawbooks without our knowledge. These laws were applied to the lawbooks without our approval… There laws were applied to the lawbooks not in an open environment, but subtlely sneaked in, unannounced, unnoticed, unapproved, unsubstantiated, and unconstitutional…..

These laws that are being upheld, benefit a very thin percentage of people, a razor thin percentage of people. at the expense of the majority…..

Rick Santorium stands up and states we are a nation of law. We follow the rule of law…

Yes, we will follow a rule of law onto which a majority of us signs on to… But nowhere in our contract with America did we agree to follow laws that have not been sanctioned by the Constitution as being legal. Nowhere in our contract with America, did we agree to follow the phantom that corporations were human beings. that corporations had just as much right as people to write laws, get them passed, and then uphold them… as if they were people….

There are times when breaking the law, is better than following it…

If you don’t believe me, just ask Jesus.


Right click to open full image… Pictograph Courtesy of Viral..

So, can someone tell me again, why we shouldn’t tax the rich, and instead, balance the budget on the backs of everyone else?…….

I seem to be missing that little detail where that all makes sense……

My suggestion is that until that $5 million tax burden on the poor is taken off the table, I am hard pressed to support a tax cut of $7 million on those higher earners“,  
 
John Kowalko, State Representative 24th District

And in 34 words, we see the folly of tax cuts on the wealthy. What good does $80 dollars per $100,000 assessed, do to the economy? But the Medicare cuts, which are simply a percentage of the total costs a person must payout, mean additional charges to individuals that range from $800 to $50,000?

You tell me! Which one affects the local economy more… Creating additional charges which take away money that otherwise would be spent on groceries or necessities, or an unneeded $80 dollars that gets spent towards buying a piece paper: one that declares you the owner of a small piece of a bar of gold, somewhere supposedly stored in a someone-who-you-don’t-know’s vault?

Tax cuts will never, never, never stimulate the economy. The only thing that stimulates the economy is to put more money in the hand of people who buy “things”. Pay people more. If corporate America won’t agree do that, then we need a government who will make them….

Remember the past decade? The fight about unions? This, is why America needs strong unions. Get rid of unions, we become nothing.

When unions were strong, the middle class was strong. When unions became weak, the middle class couldn’t get a word in edgewise.

Delaware is overdue for a non work day, to show corporate America, that Delaware will help them succeed, but only to the point that it doesn’t kill us in the process…..

It was with great relief to see Tommywonk’s account of the House Energy Hearing. In case you missed it, here are a couple of lines worth re-mentioning.

A vote to release the bill to the House floor failed 3 to 4. Then a motion to table the bill passed 4 to 3.

The room was packed with environmental advocates and opponents of RGGI, who were led by the Caesar Rodney Institute and the 9/12 Delaware Patriots.

Lots of numbers were thrown around, and the opponents warned of the enormous costs of participation in RGGI. But these dire predictions of high costs have not yet come true

I could find nothing about this on Delaware Liberal or Delaware Way. I fact if it were not for Tommywonk, I would have missed this huge event entirely.

This bill is now dead.

The room was packed with opponents of RGGI… Had the environmentalists not been there to balance out their numbers, a travesty would surely have occurred.
We would have to listen to their false science for the rest of the session…

Bottom line, as Tommywonk shows, there is ABSOLUTELY no truth to anything the Delaware Patriots or the Ceasar Rodney Institute say about the RGGI….

And the entire northeast region owes a huge debt of gratitude “he” who put his finger in the dyke..

So the next time you step outside and see a glorious summer day, crystal blue, or glance at your summer electric bill and see it’s lower this year than last years, remember to whisper a “thank you” to the person who prevented the unthinkable, Delaware’s exit from the RGGI,

“Tommywonk” is the man.

If Delaware’s Caesar Rodney Institute is Gaston, ….. Tommy is the “beast”….

Entire East Coast Wind Proposals
Courtesy of Tommywonk

If all the planned East Coast wind farms were built, at peak capacity they would provide 2311 MW’s of electricity.

Yesterday, the peak for the PJM grid, was… 66,354 MWs. … And that was on a slightly warm day in May.

On such a day, if the wind were maxing out the entire East Coast at once, 3.5 % of the required energy, could come from offshore wind…

If we use the conservative estimate of 2 pounds of CO2 per kilowatt/hour, 2311 MWh’s of wind power off the East Coast could decrease 4,622,000 pounds of CO2 in Eastern air…. (Per hour)

The all time peak for demand in the PJM region, was set August 2, 2006 at 144,644 MwH. The peaks for 2009 and 2008 were 126,805 and 130,100 MwHs respectively.

None of these wind farms are in construction stage. All are still planned.

Looking at the scale of what is needed, BIG is the way off shore wind needs to go. The demand for off shore wind is obviously there….

not a bad negotiated price, dudes

wow, it gets worse?

Bottom Line.

Valero did not reinvest in its plant during the time gasoline reached up to $4.25 a gallon. It needed to. That was wrong.

Charlie Copeland apparently by his own statement, agrees with the philosophy and tactics taken by Valero… That is wrong.

There may be others out there who also agree with Charlie. They are wrong.

Personally, I’m excited that this motherfucking monstrosity will be torn down.. I’m excited by all the jobs that such a demolition will bring, and by all the construction jobs created by whatever institution rebuilds on that site… Far more than jobs will be had by its destruction, than than would ever be realized by its continuation, not even factoring in the cost caused by its legalized killing off of Delaware’s infants, old, and infirm.

This IS a good thing for Delaware.

In Delaware the 8% seems to have turned into a 4% cut.

The problem as expressed here before, is one of scale. We can easily say, just cut the number of people we don’t need, and let the rest do the work.

That does not stack up.

For one. Those people cut would rather have ninety – two percent of their pay, than none at all.

For two. Those who say the economic impact of an 8% cut on our economy, for some reason fail to calculate that the same impact occurs if 8% of the states employees are laid off.

For three. As citizens of this state, we receive much better service by having more human beings assisting us, than by having fewer who are paid well… Imagine, standing in line at the DMV with only two people processing applications? Don’t worry, we are told… they are being paid well… Uh, ok.

So the concept of trying to accomplish more with less should not be viewed as a vice and vilified by every labor union known to man. It should be considered a virtue.

The alternative is layoffs. or higher taxes to drive more revenue though our coffers.

The populist argument is simple. People matter more than money, so tax corporations and pay people money…. I like it.

But I can remember hearing from those responsible for making Delaware a corporate friendly state, exactly how much good change came from getting rid of those negatives that impact businesses…

We honor Russell Peterson for his Coastal Environmental Act, but look at the News Journal Archives (print only) describing the bankruptcy possibilities faced by the second smallest state at that time (’79)… If we utilize our ability to take money from corporate entities because we can… then what do we have to offer them that is so great to maintain the balance and make them stay here and employ our workers? Why is Delaware such a great place to set up or keep a business if in that process, we destroy our best asset? In other words, why would Paris Hilton purposefully get fat and stop wearing make up? Same thing.

Balance is the key. And Markell is the man for that. For if this state goes too populist, it will hurt our reputation among those whose commercial enterprises actually fund our lives…

His 8% is a brilliant stroke. It keeps people employed, and trims our deficit down. It may need some tweaking.. especially on the lower end of the pay scale… but it shares the suffering better than the massive layoffs that must come if we cannot close the gap in any other way.

We pin hopes on green energy. Yet, who would want to set up a business here, if New Jersey offers it cheaper there?

Do not be quick to steal from corporations. If you’re going to steal, make sure it is from everyone, so no one can say we could have had any other choice…

But, the whole point of this article, is to demonstrate how Michigan is attempting to solve their crises. It can get quickly out of hand, there.

There is a movement to put on their ballot, a proposition requiring the downsizing of their government. In this report filed by Jamie Edmonds of WIXL TV (who just happened to graduate from the University of Delaware’s School of Journalism in 2005). there is the stirring of a citizens movement to simply downsize government.

-Their proposal would eliminate ten seats in the Senate and 28 seats in the House and two supreme court justices.

-It would roll back a lawmaker pay raise

-It would ban lobbying for two years after leaving office.

– It would cut state departments and salaries.

“What we are doing we’re having less government, less bureaucracy, more accountability to people,” Byrum said.

The group supporting this needs 300,000 signatures by July 7th to put it on the ballot.

Now Delaware does not have a ballot Proposition Clause. We are too representative and have our government too firmly entrenched in our pre-colonial traditions, to ever go that route. But, the anger is out there among our people… And accountability must be taken by those whom we put in office.

That is why the 8% cut proposed by our governor Markell is a sound one. The alternatives which are now only being explored by the Joint Financial Committee of our Legislature, are all much worse…

Remember. When it comes to suffering, all must suffer equally for it to work… That should be our mantra. All must suffer equally. All.