Community Calendar

Run for the Pumpkins 5K Trail Run
10 a.m. - Noon Westerly

Native Gardens Tour
10 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Westerly

Community Artists Program
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Charlestown

RI Families in Nature Hike at Wahaneeta Preserve
11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Westerly

Hopkinton Fall Festival
11 a.m. - 5 p.m. Ashaway

Seal Tour
11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Westerly

Public Square Rosary Rally
Noon - 1 p.m. Hope Valley

"Dirty Rotten Scoundrels"
8 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Westerly

Master Gardener Kiosk and Soil Test
9 a.m. - Noon Westerly

Fall Stroll-A-Thon
9 a.m. - 11 a.m. Westerly

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Solar array site is step in right direction

Sure liked the warmth on the Dec. 26 front page of The Sun: “Solar energy project proposed in Hope Valley clears another hurdle,” which told us how the Hope Valley Town Council permitted a solar site in currently vacant residentially zoned land with commercial rezoning approval along very strict lines. This sounds totally reasonable, and while it only took one brick to start building the Washington Monument, 36,490 bricks later is was done.

How many solar energy projects do we need to transition off climate-wrecking/species-eliminating fossil fuels? Unknown, but do know we need one to start, and thank you to appropriately named Hope Valley for providing hope that we’re progressing to meet the challenge of our generation. Shell abandoned Arctic drilling in 2013 after repeated mishaps revealed it’s unprepared for the inevitable oil spills drilling in both the most pristine and most brutal drilling conditions imaginable, bringing to mind the great “When there’s a solar energy spill, it’s just a nice day.”

Hope for the future rests in Hope Valley, with a super majority of polar bears wishing them the best. Solar power is destined to take over the world, considering the 1977 price/kilowatt hour was $76.67, and 36 years later, the 2013 price was 74 cents (according to VL Baker), and with the World Wildlife Fund reporting renewable energy could provide 100 percent of our energy needs by 2050, which, if necessary, could be accomplished by solar exclusively.

Employment, prosperity and self-empowerment, all good things, await the winner of the renewable-energy race occurring all over the world. Alternatively, do we really want to continue to suck up to Saudi Arabia and frack our way to who knows where? Could our Hope Valley neighbors start a renewable revolution, where solar energy parks are as common in residential neighborhoods as mailboxes once were? YouTube the inspiring Gordon Lightfoot song “Canadian Railroad Trilogy,” where he captures the Earth’s magic before railroad development changed everything, providing some perspective on how things change, time flies and, “It always seems impossible until it’s done” (Nelson Mandela). Solar energy parks put us on the right side of history even if it hasn’t happened yet.

Jay Lustgarten


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