Western Massive Biomass – Our Own Private Solyndra

Soon, the crowds outside the next Springfield City Council meeting will gather again, groups on one side or the other awaiting what will likely be an appeal process. Above them, raised on the rafters, will be the miraculous claims that have amazed, inspired, and drawn some of them from the very beginning. It was on the first website they read, WORKS. Yes, there it was in plain sight, something that could not be believed or ignored. The miracles continued with the second web displaying the weaver’s talents with the words GREEN ENERGY. Some felt this was too good to be true, a charlatan’s promise. His opponents felt like they were looking at a gift horse in the mouth. Finally came Weaver’s most impressive effort, RENEWABLE, yes, a literary style that could only have sprung from divine grace itself, and naturally, the debate on both sides of the aisle only intensified.

children’s novel, charlotte’s website, is an appropriate analogy here because as in the novel, it is the true spinner of illusion, the spider that goes unnoticed. All the attention of the townspeople is directed to the pig and its claims. And, like Wilbur in the novel, Palmer Renewable Energy’s proposed biomass facility is a pig with friends in high places. David Callahan, CEO of PRE, whose family business Palmer Paving has won millions of dollars in government contracts over decades throughout New England, and whose entire family has felt it their civic duty to do their utmost to serve nearly everyone in the city of Springfield. The Council, the gubernatorial candidates, and the state representative candidates (Masslive, February 6, 2011), just own the pig. The true genius, architect, and web-spinner of a project whose purpose is to rid the government of its funds and, at the same time, weave a story that makes the public believe that their efforts are for their own good is the spider of the story.

In his letter dated October 19, 2010 to Commissioner Guidice of the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources, Victor E. Gatto states: “As you know, RECs are essential for the long-term financing of biomass power plants such as PRE otherwise they must compete in the marketplace with significantly “dirtier” and lower-priced fossil fuel sources. In part, this is a request by Mr. Gatto for DOER not to adopt the recently proposed draft regulation (225 CMR 14.00) that would require at least a 40% efficiency rating on the part of the producer to receive the Renewable Energy Credit. minimum and achieve a 60% efficiency rating to receive a full REC. What is a REC? A Renewable Energy Credit, in case boys and girls don’t know, is money, money from the State to subsidize this effort. Mr. Gatto apparently laments that “when built, the PRE plant will have an initial efficiency rating of 29% based on our use of Babcock Advanced Stoker technology.”

Gatto states in his letter (he highlights his own), “While it is possible to achieve 60 percent wood chip burning efficiency solely for small combined heat and power projects in the less than 1 MW range, RECs are necessary support larger scale production of electricity that is inherently less efficient. Without acknowledging this fact, the proposed standard will, in fact, harm legitimate biomass efforts in the Commonwealth.”

Yes, RECs are “necessary”. What’s more startling than the admission that draft emissions will in no way meet what the Commonwealth now considers environmentally friendly is its admission that if it weren’t for the state, as long as REC, this project wouldn’t is financially viable and cannot compete in a free market. system that, when I last checked, turned out to be the driving force of our economy. Does a public works project that is not independently viable in a free economy without the help of government funds remind you of Solyndra? Well, it should. It might also remind you of something else.

This would come as no surprise to you if you were the most addicted news junkie as you would have immediately recognized the name of Victor E. Gatto as one of those involved in the 1990’s molten metal technology scandal along with his college roommate, Vice President Al. Blood. You see, it seems that Mr. Gatto has extensive experience in industries that cannot survive in the free market economy without government contracts and subsidies and, as in the case of Molten Metal Technologies, he cannot even survive with them. All you need to do is ask the shareholders who brought a civil action against Mr. Gatto and the other top officers of Molten Metal Technologies for violating the Stock Exchange Act of 1934, a case that was settled out of court. An easier path to the truth about Mr. Gatto and MMT can be found in Bob Woodward’s article that appeared in the Washington Post on October 17, 1997:

The donation had been requested by Knight, who sent around 100 letters asking for money to finance the chair. More than half of the $425,000 ultimately raised came from wealthy members of Gore’s informal campaign fundraising network, including current and prospective Knight clients. “Unsurprisingly,” Knight wrote to Haney in his own thank you note, “this is a very personal priority for the Vice President … I can assure you that his contribution will never be forgotten.”

Two days after the March 22 donation, the Department of Energy announced that it would expand an existing $1.2 million research contract with Molten to develop hazardous waste disposal technology by $9 million. As deputy secretary for environmental management, Tom Grumbly was the senior official involved in the decision on the Molten contract. An internal memo from Energy, dated November 23, 1993, noted that “This is the contract that T. Grumbly wants to add $9 million to.”

Woodward later noted…

Knight’s main contact at Molten was Vic Gatto, the firm’s vice president and head of government relations, and a classmate of Gore’s from the Harvard class of 1969. In his statement to Senate investigators last month, he was asked to Gatto: “One of the things Molten Metal hired Peter Knight [for] was… influencing government decisions?”

“The simple answer to that is yes,” Gatto replied.

Now, one would have to be naive to think that this is some aberration in the functioning of the government or that this type of behavior is restricted to one party over another. The point that must be made, must be emphasized, is whether or not the members of the Springfield City Council were aware of Mr. Gatto’s involvement in these matters and his current influence on biomass projects in western Massachusetts. Mr. Gatto is listed as “Founder, Director and COO” of Caletta Renewable Energy, the company that appears to be in charge of the biomass project to be owned by Palmer Renewable Energy. In his letter to the DOER commissioner, he states his title as COO of Palmer Renewable Energy. If Executive Director Callahan was unwilling to inform city council members of Mr. Gatto’s involvement and prior history, then that issued permit should be revoked on the basis of concealing pertinent facts when considering the reliability of the documents. company officials.

Questions to ask:

Does this project cover any existing lack in energy production?

answer: no

Is this project economically viable without government funds?

answer: no

Does this project improve current and existing air quality?

answer: no

Why does society need this project?

Answer: It doesn’t.

The bottom line is this: it’s not about renewable energy. It’s not about cheaper electricity. It is not about creating jobs. It is the accumulation of government contracts and subsidies as a form of business in itself and is at the root of our large national and local debt that has strangled our economy. These people are not in the business of serving society; they’re in the business of procuring government contracts and grants, that’s what they do. This is our own private Solyndra, a building erected and dedicated to the disease of cronyism. Cronyism is at the root of all the economic injustices and misdeeds we see today. it is influence. It smells like revenge. It has the imminent potential to become a personal and private bribery fund designed to increase the income streams of those who feign concern for the public good and those who have brazenly committed this outrage before.

I can’t help but wonder if somewhere in East Springfield, on a steamy industrial site, there’s a website that says SOME PIG.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *