AUGUSTA – State office buildings should soon get a renewable energy boost, as officials today announced plans to install a new 600-kilowatt wind turbine in Gov. Paul LePage’s trachea.
“If Maine is going to lead the nation to the frontier of renewable energy, we have to look for bold new strategies,” said Michael Stoddard, Executive Director of Efficiency Maine. “We’re lucky to have a supportive governor who moves a lot of air and has an extremely large neck.”
Though he is on record as a skeptic of the need for alternative energy, LePage says he will go along with the procedure. “If it brings jobs to Maine, I’m all for it,” he said.
The turbine could start supplying electricity to the state house within the year, said Kevin Thurston of FirstWind, which was contracted to construct and install the unit for about $2.4 million. Once completed, it will meet about 15 percent of the state government’s electricity demand.
“That may not seem like a lot,” said Stoddard, “but it’s only the beginning. Eventually we’ll be able to stick one of these babies into every single elected official in Augusta.”
Critics of the project say it is unreasonable to expect a chief executive to be constantly wired to the state house electrical circuitry, but Thurston called such concerns “absurd.”
“Obviously, we’ll be installing a high-capacity battery pack in the governor’s rectum, with unobtrusive wiring connecting to the turbine through his digestive tract,” he explained. “The governor will simply need to visit the electrical room once a day to have the battery changed.”
Others say the high wind speeds produced by the governor’s lungs, sometimes measured at more than 60 knots during his weekly television show, are too valuable a resource to waste.
“This is a win-win for the people of Maine,” said Stoddard. “It’s not like we’re ruining some pristine natural scenery here, and the noise pollution should be roughly comparable to Mr. LePage’s current output.”
Stoddard admitted there is a chance the governor’s voice could become “even more raspy and annoying” as a result of the procedure, but predicted no other side effects.