Is Maine 's Energy Future?

791 Words4 Pages
Maine’s energy future needs to make the complete switch over to clean energy in order to not only protect our environment, but also to keep some change in our pockets. Present consumption patterns show that about two-thirds of Maine’s net electricity generation in 2015 came from renewable energy resources (hydroelectricity, biomass, wind). It hasn’t always been this way though, for the past shows us insufficient experiences with nuclear and LNG power. However, we’re moving in the right direction with current experimentation with wind and tidal power proving to be extremely sufficient in the areas it’s been used in. We should be working to get that two-thirds up to three-thirds. Present consumptions patterns not involving clean energy are still not where they need to be. $5 billion dollars leaves the state of Maine every year. Every time the gasoline and heating oil prices that we are currently so dependent on go up by one dollar, an extra billion dollars leaves Maine out of our control. Maine is the most dependent state on heating oil in the country, with about 75% of us in Maine using it. Maine families even spend about 20% of their income on energy bills, using about 2.4 gigawatts a year. Past experiences with nuclear and LNG along with present consumption patterns should push Maine towards innovation. From 1972 to 1996, a 900 megawatt pressurized water reactor in Wiscasset, the Maine Yankee, generated about 119 kilowatts of electricity for Maine and New England. Due to economical reasons, the plant was forced to shut down permanently in 1997 and immediately started decommissioning until that was done in 2005. Factoring in all dismantlement, decontamination, and fuel storage related costs, Maine Yankee’s decommissioning co... ... middle of paper ... ...ts the energy obtained from tides, rather than wind, into useable forms of power. Experimentation is being done by a team of many different scientists from our very own University of Maine and also Maine Maritime Academy. The goal is to find sustainability science or the happy medium between social, environmental, and economical science to fit the needs of all. Though the state of Maine is making progress towards clean, renewable energy, it’s still not fully there yet. Past experiences with nuclear and LNG power show us we must get there, however, since these and others that aren’t clean prove to be less economical, environmental, and satisfying to society. Present consumption patterns are still troubling but definitely making progress through experimentation with wind and tidal energy. Maine is on the right path to making Maine’s energy future look as it should.

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