The idea of bringing solar power to Maryville (1A, Sept. 7) does not benefit Maryville for several reasons.
1. Solar power does not make economic sense on a cost-per-kilowatt basis when compared to current fossil fuel or nuclear power rates. Large-scale solar power plants only exist because of government subsidies — citizen taxes and not economics.
2. The reasoning for looking into solar power is not compelling. Just because the new TVA contract allows Maryville to pull 5% of its energy from renewable resources does not mean a study should be undertaken. It would take about one afternoon to compare what the Tennessee Valley Authority would be charging for power versus what other cities are currently paying for solar power.
3. Solar panel farms are a blight on the landscape. Blount County has scenic drives both in and surrounding its cities. Solar farms would distract from Blount's and Maryville's beauty wherever they were located. Even if solar power was less expensive per kilowatt, is it worth it to to put a blight on the landscape?
With TVA currently being a reliable and economic provider of electricity for Maryville residents, the only major reason to go forward with solar power would be if it would result in significant power bill savings to Maryville residents. Please let economics and the beauty of Blount County be the drivers of the solar power decision.