The Edmond Sun

Letters to the Editor

July 12, 2013

LETTER: Reader disputes columnist’s energy logic

EDMOND — To the Editor:

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I try to consider this as I read the Guest Opinion, published in Saturday’s issue, written by Lt. Col. Steve Russell (“Eco-warriors use unsound logic,” July 6, 2013, The Edmond Sun). He states that wind-powered electrical generators are but “an abysmal eye sore,” and laughs off its current percentage of total energy production. His disdain of what he calls “eco-warriors” and their advocacy of renewable energy systems is obvious. Therefore should I assume he sees beauty in coal mines and coal powered plants surrounded by giant piles of black, spewing poisons into the air? Maybe his eye beholds the beauty of an oil refinery, or one of many oil spills, such as the recent one caused by a train derailment destroying a small town in Quebec and killing multiple people. But he must really have to squint to see the beauty of a massive open pit tar sands mine, such as the ones in Alberta, that will supply the Keystone pipeline he advocates.

To me, efficiency is beauty; like a wind-powered generator producing electricity cleanly and safely. The new generation of solar collectors, most developed by China and Japan, produce electricity with no moving parts or waste: Now that’s beautiful.

He incorrectly asserts that “unsound logic” is used by clean energy proponents. Yet he uses unsound logic when comparing wind generated power to crude and tar sand oil. One directly produces electricity and the other produces fuel primarily to power our motor vehicles. The Keystone XL pipeline will have zero effect on the price and availability of electricity. Fact is, the world is developing and converting our motor vehicles to run on electricity; no one is converting our home air conditioners and lights to run on oil. Electricity produced by wind and solar is the future. Oil as a source of power is found mainly in the halls of government where money from big oil and energy companies is the only thing keeping this dying source alive.

If we Americans are really serious about our vulnerability to foreign oil supplies, we would take the most effective course of action; drastically reduce our consumption of oil. This course is never mentioned by Lt. Col. Russell. Instead he uses the same old misleading statements used for decades by the oil, gas, coal and nuclear industries. They degrade anyone who using sound logic and facts to offer alternates to those sources of energy.

Speaking of facts, the average “energy returned on investment,” or EROI, for conventional oil is 25:1. For tar sands oil this ratio is 2.9:1, meaning one unit of natural gas is required to create less than 3 units of energy. Some estimate that the ratio is closer to 1:1, when transportation, environmental costs and end use efficiency is taken into account. So energy from tar sands is only efficient if you make money from its production.

The lieutenant colonel is free to use any logic he chooses to behold beauty in anything he sees. In the meantime the rest of the world will see the beauty of sound logic, based on facts, to inspire the transition to renewable clean domestic sources of energy, all while drastically reducing the number of our soldiers sent into harm’s way to defend foreign energy sources.

 

Danny Smith

Edmond

1
Text Only
Letters to the Editor
  • An open letter to motorists in Oklahoma

    To the Editor:
    The Oklahoma Legislature has once again given its blessing to texting and driving. By not passing one of the many bills filed this year that would have made the practice illegal, the Legislature is in effect saying, “Want to text and drive in Oklahoma? No problem.”
    Although lawmakers have two more months left in the current session, texting ban bills have been given their last rites.

    April 4, 2014

  • LETTER: Spiking the Electoral College

    To the Editor:
    In the presidential election of 1788, Washington won all the electoral votes. Those electors were chosen by less than 1.3 percent of the population. The vote was so small because only white males who owned land could vote and in four states the electors were chosen by the legislators.

    February 21, 2014

  • UCO students opposing HB 2100

    Feb. 11, 2014
    To The Editor:

    We, the undersigned, are students or former students at the University of Central Oklahoma. We are writing to express our displeasure and opposition to a bill that may soon be debated in the senate: HB 2100.
    Pharmacists are aggressively lobbying behind closed doors for 2100’s passage. If they succeed, they will expand their profits as their friendly pharmacy board bureaucrats will have significant leverage over pharmacy benefit managers. If the bill passes, the bureaucrats will possess the power to increase fees and leverage their power into increased profit margins for pharmacies. Why else would pharmacist legislators be authoring the bills?

    February 14, 2014

  • Stop beating up on Obamacare

    To the Editor:
    I originally was planning to respond to Brandon Dutcher’s elitist, anti-public preschool article, especially since he knows people with money have been taking their children to pre-school in Edmond since 1963. But, since Edmond now has (a number of) public pre-schools I figured most people would ignore his editorial.

    December 13, 2013

  • LETTER: Student urges leaders to not wait on entitlement reform

    To the Editor:
    I am 28 years old and will only be just older than 40 by the time Medicare and Social Security programs are projected to fail. This is very concerning for young people like myself who are paying into this system and likely will not see any benefits from it. I 100 percent agree that some serious reform is needed to strengthen these programs. I think it is also important for lawmakers to help create laws that protect the privately insured from insurance companies dropping or disqualifying people from coverage. I believe this would help to keep many who can afford private health care from having to rely on Medicare and Social Security funds.

    December 6, 2013

  • LETTER: Volunteers make Thanksgiving dinner successful

    To the Editor:
    How do you thank 711 people for helping you? On Thanksgiving Day my belief in the goodness of man and that Edmond has the most giving citizens was reinforced.
    Starting on the Saturday before that day, I met the first ones as they worked diligently to clean equipment in preparation for cooking the Edmond Community Thanksgiving Dinner. More people came to three sites on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday to cook and carve.

    December 5, 2013

  • LETTER: Longtime resident disappointed in city

    To the Editor:
    I have been a longtime resident of Trails South and we have been asking the City of Edmond for many, many years for a traffic light at the corner of Countrywood and Santa Fe. As the city’s population increases, the danger increases. We have had many accidents and finally a fatality at this dangerous intersection.

    November 26, 2013

  • City’s traffic solutions disappoint resident

    To the Editor:
    I am totally disappointed with the city officials in Edmond. I live in an addition where it is difficult and extremely dangerous to exit or enter the neighborhood.
    We have had numerous traffic accidents and a fatality last month; yet the city continues to say “you do not meet the criteria for a traffic light.”

    November 22, 2013

  • LETTER: School funding vs. corporate incentives

    To the Editor:
    Lately, our state has been in the news regarding cuts in funding for schools. By some reports, funding per pupil has been reduced more than 20 percent between fiscal years 2008 and 2013. I am sure there is room for debate on the actual reduction, but it certainly seems that school funding is not a priority for our elected officials.

    November 12, 2013

  • LETTER: Terry family thanks community, police for outpouring of support

    To the Editor:
    A month ago, we lost our beloved husband, father, son, brother and uncle, Matt Terry, too soon and without warning. Matt’s passing laid our family low and we were lost.
    But not for long. The outpouring of love and support from our family and friends, our community, was overwhelming and immediate. Countless people reached out to us with shoulders to cry on, words of faith and encouragement, home cooked meals, heartfelt prayers, financial support, a bike rally, lawn care, flowers planted, even home repairs and simple chores like shopping and carpooling. Support came from all parts of our lives — family, friends and colleagues — as well as from folks we have not yet had the pleasure to meet. So many strangers, now dear to us, stopped and stood by their cars paying their respects as Matt passed from this life to the next. We are so grateful for such overwhelming grace and generosity.

    November 1, 2013