Governor Shumlin (soon to be ex-Governor Shumlin) has been a fierce and unremitting foe of Vermont Yankee.
Yeah, yeah, we know that. But I was still surprised to see a story by Mike Faher breaking on Christmas Day this year. Here's the article in VTDigger December 26, Shumlin: Vermont Better Off Without Nuclear Plant. Two years after the plant closed, and Shumlin is still crowing about closing it? This is what Shumlin wants to say, just before he exits from being Governor?
From the article above, some quotes from Shumlin.
Windham County has an advantage for economic development because "We can do cash." (Cash from the Entergy settlement fund for economic development of Windham County.)
Furthermore, Vermont is "an example of how to reduce your carbon footprint and do electric generation right."Here's my opinion of the real meaning of his statements:
- First, Shumlin is the "we" in the first statement. Entergy's $10 million in cash for Windham Country redevelopment will not make up for the loss of Vermont Yankee's payroll of 600 people. However, Vermont Yankee controlled its payroll, while the Governor of Vermont (Shumlin) makes the final decision on how the Entergy economic development funds will be spent. Indeed, Shumlin has controlled more cash after Vermont Yankee closed than he controlled when it was operating. Shumlin could "do cash." That was his version of "we."
- Second, Vermont Yankee made 70% of the power made in Vermont. Now, we import this power from the grid....adding some solar and some wind turbines in-state haven't exactly given us this power back. For Shumlin, "doing electric generation right" means that someone else generates the electricity, and they generate it somewhere else.
Yesterday was the second anniversary of the day that the plant went off-line forever, December 29 2014. My Facebook news feed includes many people sharing unhappy memories of the day. I did not enjoy reading Shumlin's cheerful words on Christmas Day as the anniversary approached.
I also encourage people to read my article about the consequences of the closing: Circles of Pain around Vermont Yankee Closing.
|Photo from the Phil Scott gubernatorial transition website|
Some of my friends send me New Year Cards with the old Jewish saying:
Goodbye to the old year with all its curses: hello to the New Year with all its blessings.
A major blessing of the New Year is that Vermont's new Governor will be Governor Phil Scott. I first heard of Phil Scott in 2010. When Shumlin led the charge against Vermont Yankee in the Vermont Senate in 2010, then-Senator Scott was one of the four senators that voted to support the plant. Twenty-six senators voted against, four voted for the plant. Scott's vote was a profile in courage. He urged the Senate to gather more information, and not just blindly charge to close the plant.
Here's the video of his remarks.
Governor Scott and A Party
And now, Scott will be Governor of Vermont! Assuming the roads are clear, my husband and I are going to Governor Scott's inaugural ball next weekend. I don't go to balls and galas on a regular basis. However, until yesterday's deadline, anyone could buy a ticket.
In fairness to soon-to-be ex-Governor Shumlin, you could also buy a ticket to Shumlin's inaugural ball at the Sugarbush Ski Resort. Mary Powell, CEO of Green Mountain Power, was a major fundraiser for that ball. I believe the ball was rather lavish. Here's an older article that I wrote about the close ties between Shumlin and Green Mountain Power. And here's an article in which Shay Totten wonders if it was just coincidence that Mary Powell raised $190,000 for the Governor's ball just before a Vermont agency needed to rule about a proposed Green Mountain Power wind farm. (Again in fairness, Shumlin's ball was a fundraiser for Vermont National Guard Charitable Foundation.)
Governor Scott's ball will be at a more modest venue: the Army Aviation Facility at the Burlington Airport. Scott's ball will be a fundraiser for charities that support those who serve or have served in the military. I plan to be there.
Vermont is not "better off without Vermont Yankee." But Vermont will be better off without Peter Shumlin as Governor. Hello, Governor Scott!