I’ve been confused about the gas lines being installed along the roads. I can’t seem to remember any public discussion about whether we the people wanted them. It seemed to be happening all over the place last summer. There were delays and single-lane traffic along Middle Road from Skowhegan to Waterville, on the road from Solon to Madison and on a trip down to the coast. Do we want to be consulted about all of this?

I read in the paper recently that the public will now be “asked” to pay extra on our electric bills to pay for this gas line installation. How do we go about refusing this “request”? The article promises that our bills will be reduced because of the increased supply of power. Should we believe them? What if there are cost over-runs? Who will pay? Shouldn’t there be more public discussion about this?

Every few days, I hear about another train wreck, like the one at Lac Megantic with the train carrying crude oil. Remember the pipeline that leaked into a small town in Arkansas? Remember the terrible BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico? Remember Fukushima? We are getting our energy in more and more dangerous ways. We need to make some major changes.

Every poll I read says that the majority of Americans favor a switch to renewable energy. We can do a lot as individuals to cause less damage to the Earth. Most Mainers that I know try to do this. In order to really change the big policies, in order to make the big changes, in order to switch our energy sources, however we need our leaders to help. We need our leaders to support and promote safe renewable alternative energy.

Abby ShahnSolon