Environmentalists Sue Over the Location of New Energy Corridors Across Federal Lands

Suit says the corridors, which were drawn up in Bush Administration,were designed to move fossil fuel electricity, not renewable derived electricity-

Conflict over electricity production and transmission has a number of sides, e.g., renewable versus fossil fuel, centralized versus distributed, private land versus public, and more.

This lawsuit is over the first in the list. Environmentalists Sue Over Energy Transmission Across Federal Lands. By Kate Galbraith. New York Times.

It vital to get the infrastructure in the right place as well as the right kind. Mistakes of hundreds of billions of dollars  in the public and private spheres have already dragged down both the economy and the environment. If these corridors are built, it will commit to a fossil fuel future.

The failure of the Obama Administration to drop these Bush energy corridors may show a lack of committment to renewables. It may also show that they don’t have enough of their people in place yet to change policy. Republican Senator’s holds on nominees has made it so even yet many land management personnel are not yet in place. For example, Jeff E as a comment just pointed to article where John McCain is using a “hold” in the Senate to stop the nomination of the new BLM Director (Bob Abbey) until McCain gets a land transfer facilitating an 8 square mile copper mine in Arizona.

Note: plantiffs in the lawsuit are: Center for Biological Diversity; San Miguel County, Colo.; Bark; Defenders of Wildlife; Great Old Broads for Wilderness; Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center; National Parks Conservation Association; National Trust for Historic Preservation; Natural Resources Defense Council; Oregon Natural Desert Association; Sierra Club; Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance; The Wilderness Society; Western Resource Advocates and Western Watersheds Project.

Find out if the corridors rip though country important to you.

Here are the maps.

McCain, Palin, Earmarks, and the DNA of Bears and Harbor Seals

One the controversial grizzly bear DNA earmark-

Bill Schneider writes about McCain’s persistent campaign story about the “horrible” congressional earmark to study DNA of grizzly bears.

McCain, Palin, Earmarks, and the DNA of Bears and Harbor Seals. New West. By Bill Schneider.

This whole thing has irritated me plenty. First there is McCain’s persistent lying or ignorance of substance of his favorite earmark story. It shows him to be stupid, cynical, careless, or all of these.

Second, I’m irritated at those conservationists who dismiss the study as just an attempt to open up grizzly country to development.

The actual number of grizzlies was an important fact to determine.

You can’t use use science only when it is in your interest. Otherwise, you are hardly different than the oil companies.

Yes, the fact that there are more grizzly bears in NW Montana than anticipated will be used as an argument to open the country up, but that needs to be fought in other ways, not by attacking the science.

I’m glad a good count was done, and it was worth $3-million. McCain can stuff it.

Rocky Barker: McCain grizzly earmark story raises questions on his focus

Senator McCain doesn’t like “earmarked” congressional spending for special local projects. There is one story he has told for a long time about this kind of “waste.” It’s that of the Montana grizzly bear DNA study. It always gets a great laugh, generates some outrage, and he convinces many of his point of view.

Anyone who knows the slightest about the grizzly DNA project knows, however, that his interpretation of the study is entirely wrong.

Rocky Barker writes about it today in his blog, “Letters to the West”.

McCain grizzly earmark story raises questions on his focus. Rocky Barker. Idaho Statesman

Governor Palin of Alaska, a big friend of oil, McCain’s VP choice

Senator McCain has announced that Alaska’s little known governor Sarah Palin will be his running mate.

As a “reform” governor, she was elected after Alaskans tired of the corruption and cronyism in the state, most of it involving kickbacks and bribes from the oil industry.

Despite her reputation for reform, she is a huge friend of big oil. She has spent most of her career in on capacity or another with the oil industry. Presumable she does out of principle what others did for a price.

Her image for clean government might have been tarnished by charges her office was behind the firing of her ex-brother-in-law, a state trooper. Her sister is in a child custody fight with the trooper. Story on firing.

She is a big advocate of drilling, disbelieves human-caused climate change, and is hostile to carnivores like polar bears and wolves.

A former beauty queen, she is 44 years old (3 years younger than Obama). Her husband Todd Palin is an oil production operator on the North Slope. He is also known for his prowess at snowmobile racing.

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Sarah Palin: Tough on polar bears. Posted by David Beard. The Green Blog. Boston Globe.
Bearing Up. By SARAH PALIN. Op-ed. New York Times.  Published: January 5, 2008

Choice of Palin Promises Failed Energy Policies of the Past. League of Conservation Voters.

Defining Sarah Palin. By Kate Phillips and Michael Falcone. New York TImes.

Investigators Are Looking at Governor About Firing. By Michael Luo. New York Times.

Aug. 31. Palin touts stance on ‘Bridge to Nowhere,’ doesn’t note flip-flop. By Tom Kizzia. Anchorage Daily News.

Aug. 31. State leaders question Palin’s qualifications. Governor’s two years of experience raise concerns about vice presidential candidacy. By Pat Forgey. Juneau (Alaska) Empire