Friday, August 22, 2008

More on wind and politics (which does not necessarily mean windy politicians)

A story by Kirk Johnson and Monica Davey on the national page of the New York Times today is headlined, "Energy Politics Proves Difficult to Master" in the online edition. The headline in the print edition is "Voters to Congressional Candidates: 'Energy is the No. 1 Issue.'" The story focuses on two congressional races, one in the 4th District of Colorado and the other in the 6th District of Minnesota. The former includes the flat and rural areas east of Denver, as well as Fort Collins, Greeley and various exurbs.

Here are some excerpts that touch on the story's rural angle:

Here in Colorado, where Democrats gather next week for their convention, candidates have sparred relentlessly over energy. By most accounts, it is the No. 1 issue in the Fourth Congressional District, a mostly rural area that sprawls across Colorado’s boundary with the Great Plains.

In the small towns and wind-swept farms of the Fourth District, it is easy to find people like Rod Diekman. Mr. Diekman is outraged about the particulars of the energy crunch, including the prices for fuel and fertilizer that are battering his 3,500-acre wheat and millet farm just north of Cheyenne Wells, and the lack of electricity-transmission capacity that is blocking construction of a wind-turbine plant on his property.

The story also details the various politicians' positions on renewable energy and some rural residents' skepticism that wind farms and the infrastructure to transport the energy it will generate can be realized in time to rescue their communities.

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