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Your Views: Renewable fuels are fine, but lets still drill for oil now
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We can all applaud T. Boone Pickens and all who are working for clean and renewable energy sources. However, none of the alternatives are going to quickly replace petroleum fuels for vehicles. If a perfect new energy source were to be developed tomorrow, it would not be usable nationwide for many years.

Presently, there are approximately 250 million vehicles in the U.S., the great majority petroleum-fueled. With the average age of existing vehicles being over 10 years and the continuing production of a large majority of petroleum based vehicles, our importation of oil will not be reduced for many years.

This means that in the next 10 years we will be exporting about $7 trillion of our national wealth, largely to nations that are not our best friends. Can we afford that in the future? Apparently, Nancy Pelosi thinks we can.

To say, "do not drill because it will take 10 years" is like telling a 55-year-old not to save for retirement because you won't need it for 10 years.

Once the oil starts flowing, it will be a permanent fix for supplying fuel for the millions of still viable vehicles and would be available for home and industrial use. It would give time to develop the safest and most cost effective alternatives, and allow the phasing out of existing fossil fuel users.

There would also be a huge help to our balance of payments deficit which will increase the dollar's value in the world market.

Allowing the free market to decide where to drill, with appropriate environmental control, will be the most efficient and productive method.

Walter Becker

Chicopee water tank needs paint, repairs
Why don't the owners of this property paint or remove the Chicopee water tank?

It used to be so lovely, but now it is an eyesore. My family and I are by there at least a couple of times a month and we always are wondering why it was allowed to fall into such disrepair.

I believe that the Chicopee community is so beautiful and this tank just makes it so ugly. I was encouraged by my 96-year-old father to write this letter.

Barbara Watkins
Flowery Branch