Thursday, January 7, 2010
Potluck with the Walkers
Because I am with the town Energy Committee, I decided to go to the potluck "event" for the Anti-VY walkers, who are spending the night in White River Junction. I call it an "event" because it wasn't supposed to be all-about-VY, it was supposed to be about how to cut our electricity use by 1/3 so we don't have to keep VY running. The Energy Committee was very interested in how the neighborhood group was going to address this.
I admit, at first I was seriously crabby about this event. I don't like the idea that anti-VY and pro-conservation were all blended together. As a matter of fact, I called it a "wolf in sheep's clothing." Still, I decided to go, especially if nobody else from the Committee could go. Nobody else could go. It was up to me.
The potluck was at a private residence, and I called the hostess and said I was pro-VY and I was only coming for the conservation part of the meeting, for the Town Energy committee. She didn't seem totally pleased, but she was very polite. I said the same thing to others at the potluck, walkers, friends of walkers, etc. I said I was there for the Energy Committee about conservation, my personal views were pro-VY, and I wasn't there to argue. I also brought Vegetarian Baked Beans I had made from the Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker cookbook. Navy beans and maple syrup and summer savory. Pretty good, if I say so myself! And they are vegan, so they are a good potluck dish.
The beans were well accepted, and so was I. I had a great conversation with an anti-VY walker from Brattleboro who builds energy efficient houses. We talked about my house, about solar hot water (a good idea, under most circumstances) and just had a great time. As he said: we don't have to agree on everything. Even some of the people who were annoying at the Putney clown-farce turned out to be sweet at this meeting. They thanked me for being brave enough to come. I thanked them for being so welcoming.
Actually, the potluck made me sad in some ways. Putney made me sad, but that was an angry kind of sad. "Will Nukem" "Wet Dreams" "No increase in global warming from shutting down Yankee!" Insults and lies, in other words.
This potluck made me sad in a deeper way. I remembered starting out in the energy field, a member of the Sierra Club, eager to promote renewable geothermal energy. Excited about the Geysers in California, a geothermal field that was being developed. Only to find the Sierra Club was strenuously trying to block the power plant. "We're not against geothermal energy; but this is not the right place for a plant." Of course. Some other plant, some other place, might be just fine. Sure.
This potluck made me sad for all the nuclear plants, and all the renewable plants, that "weren't the right plant." And all the fossil plants that got built instead.