Letters to the Editor

Green projects

February 12, 2009


To the editor:

Under the new 2009 stimulus infrastructure bill, Kansas could receive $317 million for transportation and tens of millions for energy conservation and renewable energy. President Obama wants the stimulus monies to fund green jobs. Investment in sustainable infrastructure projects now will ensure the viability of the community and Earth plus provide green jobs. Below are possible projects for Lawrence:

• Energy audits have already been conducted for many public buildings. This means buildings are ready now for energy conservation measures or retrofitting, which will save taxpayers thousands of dollars. Lawrence workers can be hired for two years to do the retrofitting. To keep the process going, an energy auditor can be hired for two years to conduct energy audits of the remaining office and public buildings.

• Provide funds for bike paths and lanes. Bike paths and lanes increase safety, plus encourage people to bicycle for health and transportation.

• Expand the Kansas Wind for Schools Program by installing wind generators at and solar photovoltaic panels on Lawrence schools. Utilize the 5 kw wind generators manufactured in Newton by EnerTech. Turn these turbines and solar panels into teaching tools and include them in the curriculum.

• The city should move toward obtaining its electric power from renewable sources. The city can issue a low-interest loan to Bowersock to build an additional hydropower plant on the north side of the Kansas River. The company is already interested if its existing federal permit will suffice.

Clark H. Coan,


Richard Heckler 9 years, 2 months ago

Excellent suggestions Clark.Repairing old east side sidewalks would also be excellent use of stimulus money that would provide local jobs either for city workers or others. City workers on a project such as this would likely provide taxpayers a better bang for the tax buck.Which sidewalks:East 19th from Haskell to LouisianaEast 13th from Haskell to CampusEast 11th from Delaware to Campus( 11th and New Jersey is the perfect sidewalk design - 1100 New Jersey)Mass Street from 23rd to 13th9th street from Mississippi to IowaEast 7th from New Jersey to Rhode IslandKentucky 19th to 6thTenn from 19th to 6th streetConnecticut from 15th to 7th Street

monkeyhawk 9 years, 2 months ago

Most excellent, Clark (says merrill). Schwang!Reminds me of Wayne's World. When do we get the air guitar?

TheResignation00 9 years, 2 months ago

These are all great suggestions. Mainly, I'm just sick of the city repairing entire streetlenghts of pavement for a few large potholes (and having to hear those who drive SUV's complain at the potholes...eyeroll)

jaywalker 9 years, 2 months ago

Read your link, XD. I agree that attempting to create 'green jobs' is no solution for stimulating the economy, and I'm sure they would eliminate some jobs and cost more to implement. But wouldn't that only be in the short run? Change over on a national scale is going to cost, but I would think over time these shifts would end up being cost effective and the technologies would naturally mature and improve. It can be easily argued that attempting to create 3 million jobs paying 30 to 50k at a price tag of $300,000 per job is ridiculous economic theory. But anything on this grand a scale is going to have eye-popping caveats. I'm reminded of the firestorm created when people found out the military spent $400 per ashtray or $150 per toilet seat. What wasn't considered is the R & D and the reasons why these things were necessary.

jaywalker 9 years, 2 months ago

edjay and XD:

You're both right. And wrong. Other than being one of the most over-used epithets these days, fascism has been characterized as being left, right, and center. Noone can reach a consensus on its political 'placement'.

khprather 9 years, 2 months ago

The term "fascism" was first coined by Mussolini to describe the anti-socialist movement that he was leading in Italy -- it comes from the Italian word for "solidarity". Born out of the violence and militarism of WWI, it was characterized by extreme nationalism and anti-Socialism. Fascist behavior was marked by a fear of national decline and impurity, as well as a belief in the primacy of the ‘race’ over any individual rights (source: historian Robert O. Paxton, "The Anatomy of Fascism"). I think it's impossible to argue that fascism began as a leftism movement. In fact it was an extreme response to the threat of a growing socialist movement. One might argue that, today, the left side of the political spectrum might move in a similarly extreme way, but we would have to call it something else. However, I don't see that happening now.

khprather 9 years, 2 months ago

Fascism is NOT anyone that desires to tell one how to live. That is a politician. Because fascism is so closely tied to Hitler and the Nazis, it is very dangerous to start throwing the word around, seeing what it might stick to. The only one in your list that might fit the mold of fascism is FOX News and CNN. Hitler was a propaganda genius, which is how he rose to power. Beware propaganda.

labmonkey 9 years, 2 months ago

Uhm... last time I looked, Kansas was landlocked and the only place 5 kW windturbines can be used is out in the ocean.

gl0ck0wn3r 9 years, 2 months ago

"Richard 'I want your money' Heckler (Anonymous) says… Excellent suggestions Clark."

Ah yes, the echo chamber at work.

fms 9 years, 2 months ago

To my mind, the way to "create" green jobs is to let it happen. I always hear a lot about how bad it is to depend on foreign oil...if that's the case, tax the stuff to make it less attractive, and the green jobs will come naturally. Pigouvian taxes are very underused.

gl0ck0wn3r 9 years, 2 months ago

I'm also confused... I thought Clark was an anarchist. One would think Clark would refuse stimulus money because of the ethical ramifications of taking money from a government that is not representational of him. Clark?

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