Howdy Folks!! Welcome to Texas’ good neighbor policy

July 7, 2011 § Leave a comment

 . . . raining SOx, NOx, coal soot, and mercury on its neighboring states!

Political leaders and utility insiders in Texas are pounding the EPA once again.  In the wake of an anti government biennium legislative session and in the glow of the governor’s presidential aspirations, there is not much hope for protecting the environment in Texas or even in Texas’ neighboring states.  So, eat our soot Oklahoma and Louisiana.  Are you surprised? 

Simply stated, The EPA is concerned that some of the dirtiest coal-fired plants in Texas not only are fouling the air in the Lone Star State but also are sending their toxic message to downwind neighbors: Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana.  If this is the case, then the EPA has regulations that would require these plants to install equipment to reduce emissions. 

Not surprisingly, Texas politicians and businesses are not happy with the thought of spending money to employ yesterday’s scrubber technology to clean Texas’s dirty coal-fired plants.  According to news reports, lobbyists for Luminant, the wholesale power generation unit of Energy Future Holdings, are complaining that this regulation may trigger the closure of four antique coal-fired plants.

Martin Lake coal-fired plant

Martin Lake coal-fired plant

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Panic . . . business leaders apparently don’t like clean air either and are worried the price of electricity may increase.  Oh no.  Republicans and Democrats are complaining to Washington that the EPA should protect business not those of us that breathe air for living, and of course, our misnamed TCEQ (Texas Commission on Environmental Quality) with its three commissioners carefully selected by the governor whine that EPA decisions punish Texas.  Punish?  Really?

STOP!!  TEXAS, are you there?  Have you had enough?  It’s time to take a stand!

  • Governor, PUCT, TCEQ, Texas businesses; you are wrong.  The people of Texas are more interested in a clean air than cheap and dirty energy.  Just try asking.
  • TCEQ . . . honestly, consider resigning.
  • Texas politicians . . . who are your constituents?  Dirty air is not a political ideology.
  • Energy Future Holdings . . . is this our energy future – dirty, antiquated coal-fired plants? 
  • EPA . . . thank you . . . our children need a voice in this fight.

Citizens of Texas . . . what’s up?  

It was the 4th of July . . . now it’s time to act independently.  Install a small-scale solar electricity system on your home or business and retire those dirty coal plants with your own actions.  The governor and the state legislature do not make it easy, but they cannot stop you.  Take a stand for clean energy . . . one home, one business at a time.

A grid-tied solar electricity system is affordable, it’s economic, and it’s scalable.  A small-scale solar electricity system works just fine.  No fuel, no water, no noise, no moving parts, no emissions.  Your solar electricity system will last 30 to 40 years.

Say no to Texas insiders; say yes to a clean sustainable energy future . . . just a little at a time.  Do not wait on assistance or inspiration from your politicians.  They are busy.
Chet Boortz, CEO


[The comments, positions, and opinions stated above are my own and may or may not represent those of SES 21 USA and its affiliate companies.]


Are you a pecan tree domiciled in Texas? . . . you might consider relocating!

February 7, 2011 § Leave a comment

Associated Press - In this photo taken Dec. 15, 2010, dead pecan trees on Harvey Hayek's ranch are shown as stacks from the Fayette Power Project stand in the background in Ellinger, Texas.

Multiple news sources reported this week on the slow but certain death of a 3,000 tree pecan orchard in Ellinger, Texas, a particularly lovely region of Texas with pastures, creeks, hills, and trees sixty miles southeast of Austin. 

 The orchard is located in what has become over years a dead zone – a vegetative wasteland.  Pecan grower Harvey Hayek describes the area as: ‘dead, dead, dead’.  The orchard that once produced 200,000 pounds of pecans produced only 8,000 pounds this year.

The consensus among locals, botanists, and plant pathologists is that the cause of this destruction is SO2 toxicity from the next door Fayette Power Plant, a coal-fired power plant that has operated for thirty years without equipment designed to reduce sulfur dioxide emissions.  What?

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) reports that the coal plant is ‘not the likely cause’.  The plant operates under a state permitting program that was disapproved by the EPA last June.  Rather than comply, Texas has sued the EPA over the permitting process.

It seems that the incidence of vegetative kill zones and SO2 from coal plants is not unique to this orchard.  Similar episodes are reported across Central Texas and the South.  Texas leads the nation with 19 coal powered plans (mostly brown lignite coal) with three more under development. 

In its mission statement, the TCEQ states:

The TCEQ strives to protect our state’s human and natural resources consistent with sustainable economic development.  Our goal is clean air, clean water, and safe management of waste. 

Well, that’s simple enough.  There is nothing about pecan trees.  Nice job TCEQ.

The governor has stated repeatedly that Texans want cheap energy.  Really?  Is it that simple? 

On the night of his reelection and the eve of his presidential campaign book tour: Fed Up! Our Fight to Save America from Washington the governor remarked that Americans have spoken, and they do not want any more feel good policies.  Really?

Well governor, here is what we want in Texas: a slice of Texas pecan pie with a scope of Blue Bell homemade vanilla ice cream and common sense environmental protections to keep our pecan orchards and cows safe from SO2

After all, the pecan tree is the state tree of Texas!

Don’t mess with Texas?  Well, don’t wait on Texas either.  Make a difference with your own roof top PV system today.  It is affordable, and it is economic.  Just do it.

Chet Boortz, CEO


[The comments, positions, and opinions stated above are my own and may or may not represent those of SES 21 USA and its affiliate companies.]

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