Re: “Heat waves: Support Energize Eastside project” [July 9, Northwest Voices]:
Communities United for Reliable Energy (CURE) claims the recent heat wave demonstrates the need for Energize Eastside, an expensive transmission upgrade. Coalition of Eastside Neighborhoods for Sensible Energy (CENSE), a nonprofit representing residents and neighborhoods, asserts that better solutions are available.
CURE says Energize Eastside is needed to avoid “a catastrophic failure.” Even if Energize Eastside were in place, none of the outages during the heat wave would have been prevented. These outages were not caused by inadequate transmission lines. Energize Eastside would not avoid most future outages. The project serves only to increase revenues for Puget Sound Energy’s foreign investors at the expense of local customers.
CURE says, “the demand is real.” PSE has withheld data showing the Eastside’s summer demand for electricity. A project that would cost hundreds of millions of dollars should be based on solid data and transparent analysis, not fearmongering and political pressure.
PSE’s customers want a modernized electric grid that provides reliable power during heat waves, droughts and intensifying storms. A “Virtual Power Plant” that includes solar panels, batteries, and smart demand response would provide better year-round reliability for less cost, less environmental harm and less safety risk.
Don Marsh, Bellevue, president, CENSE.org