Governor takes Interior Secretary Salazar to task on wind energy
In response to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar's recent comments that the offshore wind energy resource in the United States could potentially provide 25% of our electricity and replace the need for coal-fired power generation, Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal balked, telling reporters, it "Ain't going to happen." At an impromptu press conference in Cheyenne on Wednesday, Freudenthal said Salazar's comments were a "dumb thing to say," and said he hoped Salazar would learn the wisdom of "not making gratuitous statements."
Wyoming is the biggest coal-producing state in the U.S., producing more than 450 million tons of coal in 2007, or nearly 40 percent of the country's coal.
Freudenthal is a Democrat, (some might refer to him as a "DINO", a Democrat In Name Only) and his environmental politics are not exactly in lock step with the majority of the party. His positions on wolf eradication and supporting the use of snowmobiles in Yellowstone
National Park, are two such examples of him going against the majority of his own party.
However, by not fully recognizing "clean coal" and carbon capture and sequestration projects in his remarks about offshore wind power, it was Salazar that was somehow going against the grain of the Obama administration, according to Freudenthal. Freudenthal added that the
importance of coal in the nation's energy mix is a reality, 'despite any creative hypotheticals by those in the Beltway.'
So let me get this straight. Secretary Salazar spent the first fifty years of his life in Colorado, was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2006, served a short two-year stint and was tapped by President Obama to be Interior Secretary in late 2008. At what point in that timeline did Salazar become a Beltway insider? Was it in the two years before he became Interior Secretary, or has it been in the three months since?
[Originally published at Red, Green and Blue]