Debbie Dooley has effectively combined Tea Party conservatism and solar power activism. This green party star is heading to Wisconsin to fight for solar power. Dooley is the founder of the Green Tea Coalition, a conservative-focused wing of the Tea Party. She has made several media appearances on several venues across the political spectrum.
Privately, she works as an IT administrator and as a grassroots consultant. She also served as vice chairman of the Gwinnett County Election and Voter Registration Board. But she is better known as a radical right-wing grandmother, and a founding member of the national Tea Party and a leader of the Atlanta Tea Party.
But Dooley is also an advocate and outspoken proponent of green energy. She is a supporter of distributed solar generation and other forms of distributed renewable energy.
Prior to her speaking engagement at the Wisconsin Solar Energy Industries Association Solar Social Speakers series, she was interviewed by the Midwest Energy News about the Green Tea Coalition, Georgia Power, and her views on solar energy and related matters.
Green Tea Party Advocate, Debbie Dooley Interview
Following are some excerpts on the Q and A of the said interview:
Q: How did you become interested in renewable energy?
A: I began to get interested in energy with a fight we were carrying on with Georgia Power. They’re a monopoly here in Georgia. They were not acting in the best interest of rate payers in regards to some of their policies.
They (Georgia Power) were building two nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle and the utility customers were paying for that in advance. There were massive cost overruns expected, and yet they were making a guaranteed profit on the cost of the two reactors and the cost overruns.
I began to take a closer look at energy for that reason. I’ve always been a free-market conservative. I began to realize a monopoly is not a free-market – a monopoly violates free-market principles. Solar is a way to give monopolies very much needed competition. It also provides consumer choice.
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I founded Green Tea Coalition, and I recently founded in the past week Conservatives for Energy Freedom. That’s what I’m advocating for – energy freedom and energy independence.
Q: Do you think your support of solar has extra significance since you are a high-profile conservative activist?
A: I do. I believe conservatives who believe in the free market would be receptive to the right message. If you go out and say we need solar because of climate change and you hate coal, that’s the wrong message.
If you go out and hold elected officials accountable for supporting these monopolies, that’s something conservatives will respond to.
Q: Do you have solar panels or would you like to get them?
A: I went through a divorce two years ago so I’m renting a house, but you can bet when I purchase a home it will have solar panels. You would be really surprised about conservatives, how many are asking me about solar panels. It empowers the individual and it’s good for the environment. To me conservation is conservative.