Kennedy Misses the Boat when it comes to Clean Energy

Oh, Bobby - How Could You?

Feature story - August 18, 2005
For years environmentalists have had a love affair with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. He has managed to give lawyers a good name by fighting (and winning!) regional pollution battles as a senior attorney with our friends at the Natural Resources Defense Council. But environmental advocates everywhere are having a very heated tiff with our longtime partner, and for good reason.

Greenpeace activists cruise alongside Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and call on him to support the Cape Wind project.

We applauded Kennedy when he highlighted how Bush and his cronies use the "Frank Luntz approach" to environmental policy by saying, "They want to destroy the forest, they call it the Healthy Forest Act, they want to destroy the air they call it the Clear Skies Act."  But Kennedy is leading a group that has pulled a Frank Luntz of its own: the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound.

This cleverly named alliance is "protecting" Nantucket Sound from (drumroll please) clean energy!  The group came together a few years earlier to stop the Cape Wind project, a proposal for America's first offshore wind farm.  This project will provide 75 percent of Cape Cod's energy needs with clean and safe wind power.   It could dramatically reduce the need for the Cape's current oil and gas burning power plant, which caused a major oil spill in Buzzard's Bay in 2003, dumping 100,000 gallons of oil into the water.

It's about the Vision, not the View

The alliance, funded in large part by owners of property overlooking the sound, is worried that the scenic view from its coastal homes will be scarred by the turbines.  These landowners consider wind farms to be an eyesore, while others see them as beautiful structures and a symbol of the future survival of this planet.  Apparently, the alliance is more concerned with the aesthetics of its landscape, than reducing mercury contamination, asthma-inducing pollution and global warming.

On August 17, our activists challenged the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound as it celebrated Bobby Kennedy onboard the Spirit of Massachusetts. Two Greenpeace boats pulled alongside the event with banners reading "Bobby You Are On The Wrong Boat," and "Wind Power Protects Nantucket Sound."

It's time for Robert Kennedy to kiss and make up with proponents of clean energy.  We are willing to take him back as soon as he says "Yes to Wind!"