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Good Morning

Wind energy, Afghanistan and a parole bill

Stranded people gather Thursday in Chaman, Pakistan, near

Stranded people gather Thursday in Chaman, Pakistan, near a border crossing between Afghanistan and Pakistan. Credit: AFP via Getty Images/ASGHAR ACHAKZAI

Views mixed on offshore wind power

The state wants to spend all of this money on an unreliable source of power ["Unfair cost to LI of offshore wind," Opinion, July 14]. So while spending all of these billions of dollars to protect the environment, which fossil fuel plants will we shut down?

Also, what is the life expectancy of a wind turbine, and what are the projected costs of maintaining something miles away in the deep ocean? All electricity in a fossil fuel plant is made by boiling water. So when the wind off of Long Island goes from 35 miles per hour to 2 mph, we can’t just call up the plant and tell them to turn it on.

If we are forced to go through with this, I see that we are left with two choices. The first is to spend billions of dollars to install this unreliable source of electricity, which costs a fortune to maintain, and keep all of the fossil fuel plants going as well. The second is to spend  the money, estimate its average output and decommission the number of power plants equal to the wind turbine estimated output. And I anticipate that will give us constant rolling brownouts and blackouts.

— Tommy Gregoretti, Oceanside

It’s exciting to hear that we’re planning for the economic gains from the wind farms coming at some distance from our shores [" ‘Pandemic pivot’ plan laid out in LI report," LI Business, July 11].

The manufacturing and logistics of building and maintaining wind turbines bring good-paying jobs for which people need training and factories need retooling.

New wind farms should bring an economic lifeline for people struggling in our current economy. We will have good training programs from local universities to make sure people are qualified for these jobs.

Companies and maritime facilities need to know how to retool to be prepared for the new demand from these economic and environmental saviors.

— Abby Pariser, Huntington

A reader states, idealistically, that it is time to make fossil fuels a thing of the past ["It’s time to forget about fossil fuels," Letters, July 13]. She should make a list of items that in no way, shape or form rely on fossil fuels. Maybe then she would change her mind. Eliminate fossil fuels and life as we know it will no longer exist.

— Thomas Tierney, Greenlawn

U.S. should help Afghans come here

American troops are leaving Afghanistan, which concludes America’s longest war ["U.S. vacates Afghan base, full pullout by Aug.," News, July 3]. But just as nature abhors a vacuum, it seems that the Taliban will resume its control over Afghanistan. It has a long history of discriminating against and forbidding the education of females.  

After deciding to leave Vietnam, America, too often, turned a blind eye to those Vietnamese who had collaborated with America.

Afghans who aligned with America are likely to be treated as enemies of the Taliban. America should open its borders to welcome those who choose to flee from the wrath of and impending torture by the Taliban as well as to welcome any females (and their families) who wish to emigrate from Afghanistan to America.

— Ray Boivie, Kings Park

Major flaws in state Elder Parole bill

The proposed Elder Parole Act failed to pass the New York State Legislature for good reason: It treats every incarcerated person the same, regardless of the crime they committed ["Make NY’s parole laws more just," Opinion, June 7].

It would have permitted all incarcerated people over age 55 to appear before the parole board for release consideration, as long as they have served 15 years of their sentence.

As the severity and societal impact of a crime increases, so too should the offender’s subsequent prison sentence. For example: There should be different sentences for an opioid addict who commits a nonviolent property crime to fuel an addiction as compared to sexual predators or cop killers.

Yet advocates of the bill argue that the law would not allow offenders to be released but instead would give them only an opportunity to plead their cases before the parole board.

If that were to happen, then victims and their families would have to argue their case every two years before the parole board, forcing them and their communities to relive horrific traumas in a never-ending fight to keep violent predators behind bars.

We must not underestimate the impact that any change to our criminal justice system will have on victims and their communities.

— Laura Ahearn, Port Jefferson

The writer is executive director of the not-for-profit Crime Victims Center.