Pipeline to cheaper - or more costly - energy? - 237 responses

Mar 23, 2014

While the exact causes may be in dispute, the fact that the cost of electricity is rising is not, as rates have increased 55 percent in New England in the past year. While electricity providers claim more regional gas pipelines are needed and all six New England governors have stated their respective support for a tariff that would help pay for them, Live Free or Die Alliance (LFDA) Facebook members remain squarely divided on the solution.

In asking the question, “To control long term electricity costs, should New Hampshire support a program of natural gas pipeline construction,” 32 percent of LFDA respondents answered affirmatively, while 28 percent said they would not. The question also sparked strong sentiments among the 40 percent of respondents who did not directly answer the question but chose to discuss the pros and cons of a wide range of energy fuel options. In total, the LFDA received 237 citizen responses, including specific comments from 88 individuals supported by 137 concurrences.

Expressing their support of natural gas pipeline construction, several respondents noted it was a viable solution provided it could yield tangible benefits, while others cited it as cost-effective when compared to other choices. “It is far cheaper per therm than any other fuel/utility source,” said one respondent.

For many who disagreed with such a position, however, New Hampshire should instead develop alternative energy sources. “We should be building wind farms and investing in solar power,” noted one woman. “Gas and oil should become memories.”

Such alternative energy solutions, however, did not sit well with many of the respondents who preferred a broader discussion on the ideal energy source, citing their belief that alternative fuels are inherently the most costly, or a more pragmatic viewpoint. “Winds don't always blow and the sun doesn't always shine,” remarked one gentleman.

Click here to see the full Facebook discussion of this question.

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