Kentucky has traditionally enjoyed cheap electricity. Power once came from coal, but that coal is gone, and now our utility bills are going through the roof.
We have no choice but to make new power sources. Solar, wind and hydroelectricity could make significant contributions to Lexington, bringing rates down and keeping money in the pockets of the people. There is no single solution to the problem of electricity generation; what’s needed is a variety of micro-solutions.
The solar project on I-64 is a good start, but more is needed. We should capture hydroelectric energy from Town Branch and use it to power downtown. We should capture hydroelectric energy from Lock 3 on the Kentucky River and power our water system. We should partner with the University of Kentucky to implement these and other innovative power systems.
As large corporations move into on-site electricity production, removing their biggest customers from the power system, the utility corporations will look to us to shore up their profits. Our rates are on a one-way trip to the sky, and if we don’t get our utility company under control or supplement it with new sources, we’re in trouble. Lexington will thrive if we control our electricity.