Forum, Jan. 8: Energy Action in Cornish, Plainfield

Sunday, January 07, 2018
Energy Action in Cornish, Plainfield

Wise beyond his years, a high school student from Brattleboro, Vt., in an excellent VPR commentary this past Thanksgiving, quoted the Native American leader Crazy Horse, who said: “Treat the Earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children.”

When confronted by the shortsighted behavior of many of our elected leaders, who continue to promote the burning of fossil fuels and obstruct the widespread implementation of renewable energy sources, is there anything that can be done on the level of our small, rural towns to make this loan whole?

The Cornish and Plainfield energy committees have a very clear idea, and have been hard at work this past year promoting a plan for our towns to adopt 100 percent renewable energy by 2050.

The idea behind this commitment, which will be voted on at this year’s Town Meeting in March, is to send a strong message that, if we wish to prevent the worst effects of global warming, action needs to be taken now.

If our towns approve this commitment, then each town will devise plans to achieve the 100 percent renewable energy goal, which could include community solar and wind installations, networks of residential and municipal battery systems, weatherizing homes, energy conservation and promotion of electric vehicles.

In anticipation of this goal, our towns are participating in Vital Communities’ fantastic Weatherize Upper Valley program, which offers discounted energy audits and extremely advantageous prices for weatherizing homes. The Plainfield and Cornish energy committees invite our residents to the kick-off event on Jan. 24, at 7 p.m., at the Plainfield School.

There will also be a power-packed information session about the upcoming vote on 100 percent renewable energy on Feb. 15, at 7 p.m., at the Cornish town offices. For more information, email mary.n.boyle@gmail.com or visit www.plainfieldnh.org/energy/R100.html.

In the spirit of paying forward this loan, we look forward to joining the other 50 cities and towns throughout the U.S. that are also adopting 100 percent renewable energy goals.

Joanna Sharf


Member of the Cornish Energy Committee

A Vision of Cruelty on Page One

I was personally most upset with your front-page picture of a man setting an animal trap (“On the Hunt,” Dec. 16). I do not feel that such a vision of cruelty should be on the front page of your paper.

I grew up in rural Maine and one day, when I was a child, I was snowshoeing on my grandfather’s farm. In the distance I heard the most terrible howling and followed the sound. The sound was coming from our neighbor’s dog who was caught in a metal trap. His paw was mangled badly.

I did not know how to release him so went home as quickly as I could to get help. When we returned he had bled to death. The terror an animal experiences when caught in a trap is horrible. Sometimes they are shot or clubbed depending on how best to preserve the fur.

Trapping is inhuman for the suffering it causes and should not be allowed. I cannot believe that the money received for the pelts is worth the suffering and pain of a living creature. Please reserve your front-page photographs to subjects that stir the heart with the kindness in the world not the cruelty that man can cause to another living being.

Linda J. Wilson

Springfield, Vt.

Cancer Society Offers Free Rides

Many thanks to Jim Kenyon for his informative article about Uber in the Upper Valley (“A Two-Way Street: Uber Offers Freedom to Upper Valley Drivers, Passengers,” Dec. 31). He mentioned that cancer patients use the service to get to treatment appointments. The American Cancer Society provides rides for cancer patients at no cost through its Road to Recovery program.

Volunteer drivers connect with patients via the cancer society website. Drivers are screened, insured and trained in working with cancer patients.

The American Cancer Society is known as a major funder of cancer research and as a strong advocate for universal health care, but it is also a provider of services for cancer patients at a grass-roots level. Please visit www.cancer.org to learn about all the patient-based programs available.

Susan Barron


Taking a Check, Taking Care

Last Thursday, upon arriving at our chosen venue for an outing with my grandchildren, I realized I had left my credit card and cash at home in a ski jacket. I did have a debit card, but the machine and my card could not communicate.

I did have my checkbook, but the venue does not take checks. (What have we come to?)

I stood there in despair when the person standing nearby said, “I’ll take your check.”

“Really? How kind. Are you sure?” I asked.

“Yes,” said my rescuer.

The grandchildren and I were then able to enjoy our outing because of the kindness of a complete stranger. His parting words were, “We have to take care of each other.”

Indeed we do, and you did. Many thanks!

Toni Vendetti