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    From Russia with unease: Natural gas comes to Boston

    Our past missteps on green energy are besetting us now

    Thank you for your editorial highlighting New England’s new dependence on natural gas by way of Russian oligarchs (“Russian gas: Just say nyet,” Jan. 30). Unfortunately, it did not have to be this way.

    Five years ago this June, the Committee for a Green Economy published an economic study that concluded that a fair, simple, and transparent revenue-neutral fee on greenhouse gas pollution would have spurred economic growth, job creation, and emission reductions in the state. Had political leaders acted, by now conservation, efficiency gains, and additional renewable energy sources might well have closed the modest shortfalls in natural gas supply we face — the very ones forcing us to accept dirty fuels from dirty suppliers.

    Even today, two bills to implement similar policies sit languishing in committee on Beacon Hill, as another tanker is on its way to Boston.

    Gary Rucinski

    Massachusetts state coordinator

    Citizens’ Climate Lobby


    More gas pipelines
    are not the answer


    Last month your editorial board published its resolutions for the new year, including: ”Push for the region to become less dependent on natural gas and a leader in solar, hydro, and wind power.” But recently it’s become hard to distinguish between the voice of your editorial page and that of the natural gas industry.

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    A Jan. 11 editorial described the use of oil and coal during our recent cold snap. Tuesday’s editorial says efforts to stop new pipelines are one of the reasons we have Russian ships bringing liquefied natural gas into Boston Harbor. A solution, according to your paper: more gas pipelines.

    In fact, there are a number of steps we can take to meet short-term energy needs during cold snaps that don’t involve investing in pipelines that will be around for 40 years. These steps range from improving our LNG storage system to reducing our demand through energy efficiency solutions.

    It’s time for the Globe’s editorial board to stop boosting the natural gas industry. Building more pipelines is the wrong investment for our children. We should, and must, be investing in energy efficiency and clean energy. The implications of our energy choices today for the future habitability of our planet are simply too great.

    Kelsey Wirth