When it comes right down to it folks, we are living in a most confusing time. It’s next to impossible to discern the truth of a matter and get credible sources of info on anything you may be interested in. Media sources are sometimes biased and bought, the government is all over the map, and big industry is slick and looking out for No. 1. Issues are complex and we, as the public, are subject to deceiving ad campaigns, industry greenwashing, and government spin in most egregious ways. 

To be honest, sometimes we don’t even know what many of the terms that are being thrown around mean. So, after years of targeted research, attendance at industry and government sponsored conferences, and participation in numerous industry/media/government hosted dog and pony shows, I have compiled a handy-dandy glossary of terms to make an understanding of offshore wind energy more relatable.

Fossil fuel funded: A favorite epithet thrown out to malign folks fighting against offshore wind that’s almost never the case and so hypocritical. Rarely do the mudslingers realize that they are accusing people of something that they are guilty of themselves. The wind industry is heavily funded by oil companies, (in fact many of the wind energy companies are oil companies) making this tactic illogical.

Green energy: The ultimate in industry spin deceptions! A description so vague in its parameters but so powerful in its ability to engender blind following and support that it has the capacity to keep intelligent people from using their own heads for something besides a hat rack. 

Renewable: A misnomer and complete semantic misappropriation of a clearly defined word. There is not a single aspect of the offshore wind industry that is renewable. Offshore wind graveyards and landfills tell the story of a word that never should even be in this glossary. 

Port revitalization: What a pretty concept for a really horrendous process: a complete industrialization of our coast. The only thing that will be revitalized are the coffers of the port entities and the companies building and running the show. Our small harbors will be irreparably impacted and our thriving local industries most certainly won’t be revitalized; rather they will have the vitality sucked right out of them. 

Scientific monitoring program: A nonexistent program that if it were in place would keep the permits for offshore surveys from being viable. An absolutely necessary mitigation that none of our California or federal agencies seem to be able to find important enough to mandate or enforce. 

Responsible offshore wind development: There is no such thing! As shown in numerous offshore wind developments both here and abroad, the industry is not a responsible or viable source of energy. It is environmentally destructive, economically infeasible, and expensive, and is an inefficient and highly variable source of energy. 

So, there you have just a small but illuminating glossary, one that if researched and acted on will help you save our amazing and vital Central Coast from a destructive and rapacious industry and the clueless folks that have swallowed their B.S. hook, line, and sinker. 

Mandy Davis
Los Osos
REACT Alliance

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