Readers' views for Jan. 18, 2013
Hydropower is renewable
Washington state Rep. Larry Haler is leading an effort to change the state constitution to recognize hydropower as a renewable energy resource by adopting proposed House Resolution 4200.
Under current law large utilities are required to buy at least 3 percent of their power from eligible renewable resources, such as wind and solar, which are specifically listed. That percentage increases to 9 percent in 2016 and 15 percent in 2020. But hydropower is not listed or counted toward the renewable requirement.
Environmentalists don't like HR4200, arguing that while it's great to have two-thirds of our power coming from hydro, emphasis should be on encouraging other sources such as wind and solar.
That's well and good. But it's not well and good to ignore and not list the hydropower, which provides two-thirds of our power as also a renewable.
The state Legislature, which convenes this month, should vote to amend the state's constitution to name and include hydropower as a renewable energy resource.