Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

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longri
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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by longri » Tue Feb 12, 2019 4:56 pm

rlown wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:07 pm
I'm 57 and really don't care about changing soon, as I'll most likely be dead before it impacts me.

Rlown hits the nail on the head with one of the big reasons why this is such a hard problem to solve. Nobody thinks it's their problem.

On the one hand, he's wrong. Climate change is already impacting him. But the effects are small enough that he can adjust, ignore, dodge, or simply afford them. There are bigger issues he'll contend with than climate change as his time runs out. It's perfectly understandable from a self-centered point of view.

I get it. It's the same for me. I'm probably home instead of still overseas because of climate change. That's a small thing, an interrupted vacation. It's not going to make me go buy solar panels for my house.

The biggest effects will be on others, those in other places and in the future. If you don't give a crap about anybody else then it's a simple bit of arithmetic to figure out that it's not high enough on the chart to be worth worrying about. It's because we live such short lives that it's a morality question.








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rlown
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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by rlown » Tue Feb 12, 2019 6:17 pm

Oh, I care. I just don't live in stupid places where the urban or suburban boundaries aren't thought out beforehand.
My property is grazed by animals. Trees are trimmed. My wires are underground.
Do I want to pay more taxes for others to do the same? NO.
Fix your local area.

If we're talking about the world, give it up. We outsource our sins to them.

As we have a wind and rain event tonight, I'm sure the power will go out, there will be no fire, but I do have my trusty headlamp.

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by rightstar76 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:13 pm

.
Last edited by rightstar76 on Mon Aug 05, 2019 2:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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rlown
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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by rlown » Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:22 pm

But WD is in SMUD territory as I gather from her location.
If you burned from PG&E, let us know.

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by oldranger » Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:48 pm

rightstar76 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:13 pm
WD, I think PG&E is a symptom of the problem. For decades, they've proven their worth as a profit making machine for their shareholders. Just like the fossil fuel industry has done. PG&E has done so well they have an army of lobbyists to help keep it that way. They've bought off our state legislature and use CPUC for their own benefit. This is unfair given we pay for CPUC. Also, we pay to bail out PG&E. It's a great deal for PG&E and their shareholders. As long as the champagne flows there's no reason to do anything different. Which is why it's time for PG&E to be made a public utility. A struggle worth having since PG&E, lobbyists, shareholders, and corrupt public officials like the status quo. Most of them couldn't care less what happens to human beings and the planet unless it affects them personally. Otherwise, whenever PG&E does something wrong, all they have to do is hire a high priced law firm to solve their problem. Business as usual for them.
I really don't think making it a public utility would change things much. Still need to provide electricity and the public wants energy at its lowest cost so important environmental issues will be neglected. Think of what BPA and other PUDs have done to salmon runs on the Columbia! It doesn't matter whether a utility is public or private it still must generate and distribute energy and there will always be costs and risks associated with that industry. We all enjoy the benefits of technology right up until the time there will be no natural world left.
Mike

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by Wandering Daisy » Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:11 pm

My electric provider is SMUD. Gas is PG&E. A big transformer is on the next corner, trees all around, if it blows, I guess I may get burned down too.

A little rant here. :soapbox:

It is easy to be an armchair environmentalist, criticizing utilities. Granted, PG&E has some serious problems. But running a utility is complex, partially government regulated, partially beholding to your shareholders*, partially limited by not being able to truly charge customers what it takes to do all the work. *you just may be a shareholder in PG&E- depending on their profits to fund your CALPERS retirement.

I have also been listening to all the criticism of DWR with respect to the Oroville Dam. We have old dams, built at a time when downstream was mostly farmland. Nobody willing to foot the bill for needed upgrades once urban encroachment happened. And nobody wants to understand risk and unpredictability. I was involved with background investigation into the flooding caused by Don Pedro overflow and downstream levee breaks. Englebright Dam also came very close to failure during that 97 flood year. And yes, I my consulting firm worked for one of those "big bad water districts". The ones, everyone wanted to sue. The general public always knows "what should have been done" in hindsight.

The average person simply does not understand what is involved in running one of these facilities, or running a large utility. Amazingly ignorant perceptions- "but I thought living right under a dam was safe because it would hold back the water". Posted flood stage markers well above the roofs of mobile homes. No problem- "we have levees." A 100-year flood event-" oh it will not happen for 100 years". And "been through fires before, nothing new". Well, this fall's fire WAS something new. Mother Nature is unpredictable and at times untamable. The public wants their cake and eat it too. Let out too much water and you get sued for causing a water shortage; do not let out enough, and you get sued for flooding someone.

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by rightstar76 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 3:34 am

WD, it's all connected. Greed was once thought to be good (lionized by a 1980s film) until we were forced to bail out corporations like PG&E everytime they made mistakes. In PG&E's case, those mistakes i.e. the San Bruno Pipeline explosion and the Camp Fire were all preventable, but PG&E in true business form continued to cut corners to enrich its shareholders.

Oldranger, PG&E has been raising its rates for years. It also got a generous bail out last year. And now it's in bankruptcy again waiting for another bail out. We've been forced to pay for their mistakes out of our pockets for years. And Paradise and San Bruno are some of the bitter fruits of this practice. So I'm sure raising rates again will result in even better service. PG&E had decades to prove itself and it certainly has...to its shareholders. It's time for a public utility that works for us. And if that means lower rates, most people would accept that.

Finally, there's something missing here. People died in these fires. Burned alive. What horror and physical pain they endured. Completely unnecessary. How tragic that a system that supports corporations like PG&E would be worshipped so much that their lives would have so little value. How tragic that a system that is warming our planet so much that it destroys our trees and communities in the Sierra Nevada would be allowed to continue.

So...what ideas do people have that can change the status quo here in California and the Sierra Nevada?

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by longri » Wed Feb 13, 2019 8:34 am

rlown wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 6:17 pm
Oh, I care. I just don't live in stupid places where the urban or suburban boundaries aren't thought out beforehand.
My property is grazed by animals. Trees are trimmed. My wires are underground.
Do I want to pay more taxes for others to do the same? NO.
Fix your local area.

If we're talking about the world, give it up. We outsource our sins to them.

As we have a wind and rain event tonight, I'm sure the power will go out, there will be no fire, but I do have my trusty headlamp.

That was pretty funny, rlown. Thanks for the laugh!

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by oldranger » Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:48 am

Rightstar it seems to me that there are two issues here. 1. That PG&E are ripping people off and 2. They are neither environmentally or public safety wise responsible. Somehow you believe that Utilities ran by PUDs will resolve these issues. I just don't buy #2 for the reasons I've already mentioned. Now for # 2 what is the difference between tax payers bailing out a private company or having to pay for the mistakes of a public entity? Not sure what the law is in California but in Oregon if the state causes damage to private property it doesn't have to compensate the owner,for example a home was destroyed by a fire started by a state employee that spread to private property and burned down a house that was under construction and the state did not compensate the homeowner even though the state admitted fault. Do you really think a public utility will treat you more fairly. Think again! The city of bend charges me a utility fee based on the footprint of my house for storm water drainage, yet there is not a storm drain within a half mile of my house. We do not have curbs in our neighborhood so except for our driveway there is nothing impermeable between our property and the street. There is never any runoff issues in our neighborhood. About 20 years ago our neighborhood was annexed into the city. We were promised to be hooked up to the city sewer system at very low cost to the property owner due to available grants. Well the city sat on it and now the cost will probably be in excess of $30,000. Some people have been forced to pay as much as $70,000 to be hooked up. Part of our taxes go for snow removal from our streets. Unfortunately since we've been annexed into the city we have had timely snow removal only one time. Generally our road gets plowed 2 days after the storm. By then the roads are packed down and a solid sheet of ice so the plow just bounces on top of the ice and does nothing to clear the road. Or like a couple of days ago our road was 90% clear when the plow came down the road. So I'm paying taxes for a service that does me virtually no good and really is a waste of taxpayer money. Sorry but if you believe that publicly owned utilities are a panacea for the problems you cite my experience says otherwise.
Mike

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rlown
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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by rlown » Wed Feb 13, 2019 11:00 am

Still gonna burn in Summertime wind events unless they get a handle on fuel load and urban/suburban boundaries.

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