Tag Archives: Entergy

Another batch of lies from the Koch factory

The black sheep of Vermont’s journalism family, Vermont Watchdog, took a short break from its incessant anti-renewable campaign and pooped out a single-source article alleging that Vermont is a fiscal disaster.

A new report from a government accounting watchdog group finds that Vermont has a debt of $3.9 billion, despite claims of having a balanced budget.

The Financial State of the States 2015 report, released this month by Chicago-based Truth in Accounting, debunks the myth that states balance their budgets.

Okay, first of all, any “accounting” group that doesn’t know the difference between a balanced budget and long-term indebtedness ought to be drummed out of the bean-counter fraternity. Every large entity, government or private sector, carries a certain amount of debt on its books. Routine.

So, who are these incompetent clowns at “Truth in Accounting”?

Three guesses, and the first two don’t count.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Yankee no longer produces power, but it’s still cranking out bad PR

If anyone needed a reminder why Entergy wore out its welcome in Vermont, well, we just got another one. The corporation has decided to outsource Vermont Yankee’s security four years earlier than planned, in a move expected to save “millions of dollars.”

But that’s not the “bad PR” part of the story. No, it was the way Entergy phrased the announcement. Take it away, Vermont Yankee Security Manager Patrick Ryan:

“… it is important to reinforce that one of our top priorities continues to be the safety and security of our facility.”

Okay… wait.

One of our top priorities”?

The chief of security says that security is “one of” their top priorities. How reassuring.

Continue reading

The Brock campaign’s nuclear connections — UPDATED

Last week, Randy Brock kinda re-introduced his bid for lieutenant governor at the same news conferece where a bunch of Republicans threw their lot in with Marco Rubio, the presidential candidate last seen telling dick jokes about Donald Trump.

Mm-hmm, presidential.

Brock made headlines by claiming he knows how to boost state tax revenue by $100 million, and I’ll be writing more about that in the near future. But he also showcased his campaign team. And the media coverage was notable for what it didn’t say.

VTDigger identified campaign manager Brad Ferland in passing, without specifying his credentials. The Vermont Press Bureau named Ferland* (listing his day job as deputy commissioner of the state Department of Finance and Management) and two others: Brent Burns, credentials unspecified; and Guy Page, identified as “field director for VT Watchdog.”

*UPDATE: The VPB was in error. There are two Brad Ferlands. The one who works for the state is not connected with the Brock campaign in any way. 

The latter is interesting enough; VT Watchdog is the Green Mountain outpost of the national Watchdog network, which is funded by far-right wealthy donors in the Koch brothers orbit.

But what’s even more interesting about Page and Ferland is what wasn’t reported: both are on the payroll of the Vermont Energy Partnership. For those unfamiliar, this bland-sounding organization is basically a sounding board for corporate energy interests in Vermont. As Green Mountain Daily put it:

The Vermont Energy Partnership was founded by [some] of the most powerful corporations, few from Windham County, including IBM, Casella Waste Management, and Pizzagalli Construction, plus business associations like the Vermont Fuel Dealers Association. And, of course, Entergy.

Continue reading

Giving the name “Deadpool” a whole new meaning

House Speaker Shap Smith did something unusual this week: he put out a strongly-worded position statement on an issue not currently before the Legislature. More on that in a moment, but first, feast your eyes on this all-kinds-of-wrong picture.

Family fun for everyone!

Family fun for everyone!

That, my friends, is how they’re storing radioactive water at Vermont Yankee, as reported last week by VTDigger’s Mike Faher. That pool, seemingly stretched to the bursting point, is an Intex “Easy Set” swimming pool, advertised as one of “the easiest family and friend-sized pools to set up in the world.”

Yikes.

Continue reading

I think Dick Mazza’s just trolling us now

Well, the State Senate’s #1 Untouchable, Dick Mazza, is at it again.

This time, the alleged Democrat has co-written an opinion piece (published a few days ago in the Bennington Banner) with Republican Peg Flory and alleged Democrat Bobby Starr, slamming the Shumlin administration for, uhh, seeking the shutdown of Vermont Yankee.

To be more precise, the three solons accuse Shumlin of rank hypocrisy for wanting to close Vermont Yankee and now seeking divestment from coal stocks. Because Vermont Yankee was renewable energy, see?

Yeah.

The essay includes plenty of harsh rhetoric you might expect from the outer precincts of the VTGOP. (Tougher than Phil Scott, certainly.) Here’s a sample:

Recent issuances from Vermont’s government have overridden fiduciary responsibility and due process in favor of special interest campaigns and political gestures.

Right out of the Republican playbook, no? And then, this:

The eventual, unfortunate decision to close Vermont Yankee has now increased the state’s carbon footprint, as Vermont uses more fossil fuels for energy generation. State government officials at the time called the loss of high paying jobs and expanded tax base “hard news,” as if nothing could have been done to prevent the closure and its consequences.

Again, chapter and verse from the VTGOP: pinning the blame on Shumlin and ignoring the fact that it was Vermont Yankee’s owner that pulled the plug. For all of the Governor’s posturing, Entergy was winning the court battle over VY’s future when it decided, purely on financial grounds, to close down the plant on schedule.

Continue reading

The Vermont Yankee Lie

Well, I guess I’ve got to get my elephant gun, because an irrepressible little Republican gnat is buzzing in my ear again.

The metaphorical “gnat” in this case is a favored lie among Vermont Republicans: that Democrats are to blame for the closing of Vermont Yankee, thus robbing our state of putatively “clean” energy (as long as you can ensure thousands of centuries of safe storage, heh) and hundreds of good-paying jobs.

The latest shibboleth-repeater is one Scot Shumski, member of the Burlington School Board and spectacularly unsuccessful candidate for the House in 2014. (For those keeping score at home, he got whomped by Dem Jean O’Sullivan by a nearly 3-1 margin.) He took to the Twitterverse on a hot Monday afternoon:

Continue reading

The NRC has faith in the stock market

Our government’s nuclear watchdogs made a move yesterday that reinforces their image as the Industry’s Best Friend.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has granted requests from Entergy Nuclear Operations Inc. to use some of the $665 million in its decommissioning fund to store used fuel rods that remain radioactive for thousands of years.

And by “some,” we mean $225 million, or more than one-third of the same decommissioning fund that’s woefully underfunded for the task of actually decommissioning Vermont Yankee, which is why we’ll have to wait 60 years before the thing is safely disposed of.

And here’s the ha-ha funny thing.

Continue reading