I oppose any proposed power lines over the Santee Delta. The Delta, as pointed out by those far more eloquent and informed than I, is a valuable ecological, environmental and economic asset to South Carolina.

It is one of the few such areas left on the East Coast and provides habitat for endangered species, native plants and animals, as well as providing the American people an opportunity to see the awesome nature of our land.

The Delta also contains remnants of our history, many buried beneath its surface, but some still visible - not only the known and recognized areas and plantations, but also many sites which are hidden or "off the beaten path," but which nonetheless provide insights into the life and times of people from Native Americans, to African slaves to white settlers. Please do not destroy this valuable ecosystem.

Perhaps one of the most valuable, but also most difficult to explain things about the Santee Delta is its "sense of place." It is a fascinating and fragile area which cannot be replaced. Both of the public hearings held near McClellanville (one in January 2010 and one recently in 2014) should make it clear that the public does not want the Delta compromised and damaged by anything.

Please listen to the people. There is a viable alternative, using Highway 17 to the south, as a recent article pointed out.

As a resident of McClellanville and a person with deep family roots in the Delta and the surrounding area, I am willing to put up with the existing problems rather than seeing the Delta violated.

I also urge and entreat the energy companies to consider and implement the use of solar power. For less than the amount of money spent on studies and hearings, most of the existing power needs in the McClellanville area could be serviced with solar power.

Excess power would even be available for other consumers. Two months ago, I received a quote for the cost to completely transfer my house to solar energy. It is a lot, but the price has dropped since then and I am sure will drop further as people become more aware of its advantages.

I believe it is the right way to help deal with the increased use and demand for energy and it is something we should all try to do.

SCE&G and the Central Electric Power Cooperative (are they all really co-ops?) should take the lead in providing solar energy and working with people to reduce its costs instead of wasting money, time and energy on the destruction of a valuable resource which is part of our history and which provides far more to the public than any 75 to 100-foot tall transmission towers will.

Harriott Cheves Leland

Morrison Street