August 3, 2013

Not pristine??????

Virginia's State Corporation Commission has finally ruled that Dominion Virginia Power's power line over the historic James River be approved. Lots of opposition and quite a few of our local dollars tried to convince them that the proposed crossing would be a blight to our eyes. But the hearing examiner said that specific view was NOT pristine because it was already blighted by roller coasters, water towers, a nuclear power plant and Kingsmill homes. OK, so it was not the pristine view that John Smith saw. But having sailed under similar power lines across the Delaware River, I can state that power lines across a river are VERY unsightly. 

Dominion's other option across the truly pristine Chickahominy River was equally unsightly and opposed.

It's not like we can chose another power company to provide our electricity. Monopoly was a fun game when we were kids, but James City County has just landed on Boardwalk with very little play money. Monopoly wins again; we lose. A similar crossing over the also scenic Columbia River in the Pacific Northwest also mars its look. Is that the cost of our growing dependence on electricity?

The environment loses too. Invasive plants will thrive on each bank of the James where the land structures are built. Are there wetlands nearby? And I can't begin to imagine the kepones and other "stuff" that will be released when the towers in the river are being sunk into the riverbed. Isn't this the same river that the state is spending quite a few bucks on to restore oyster beds? The sediment that will be stirred up will be counter-productive to that effort.

But perhaps Dominion will include major mitigation efforts when they construct this power line. don't hold your breath. 

But I suppose it is all relative. I don't find the look below unappealing.