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Letters to the Editor: Texas learns a cold truth on climate change: All states are in it together

A man pushes free a car that spun out on a snow-covered road.
A man pushes free a car that spun out on a snow-covered road in Waco, Texas, on Feb. 15.
(Jerry Larson / Associated Press)

To the editor: When it comes to the reliability of our states’ respective power grids, it does not help much for Californians to throw dirt clods at Texans or for Texans to throw snowballs at Californians. (“Texas blackouts show the power grid isn’t ready for climate change,” Feb. 16)

Both states are victims of a national energy policy that has relied heavily on petroleum products for decades and has effectively helped to increase carbon dioxide in our atmosphere to levels not seen for 3 million years. The result is more frequent and extreme weather events that are overwhelming our energy infrastructure.

To combat climate change, we need a national energy policy that places a fee on carbon. This fee will help to price petroleum products in a manner that reflects the true cost that they are placing on society and will make renewable energy much more attractive.

It is time that we stop fighting with one another and begin to actively battle climate change.

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Jeff Stoddard, Santa Ana

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To the editor: I suppose Texas moving toward secession while needing federal assistance during its “big freeze” is like a kid who wants to leave home because everything’s unfair and asks their parents for the car keys and some cash for gas.

If Texas succeeds at removing itself from our union, whoever is running for the Grand Long Horn of the Nation of Texas should campaign on the platform of, “I’m going to build a wall around Texas and make America and Mexico pay for it.”

Michael Yamashiro, Chino Hills

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To the editor: Thanks for reporter Sammy Roth’s analysis of the recent Texas blackout. It turns out, this cold snap isn’t the first to affect the state’s energy supply.

In February 2011, exceptionally cold weather in Texas forced rolling blackouts that affected an estimated 1 million customers, according to a Reuters report published at the time. Eerily, the report lists the same situation: Extreme cold knocked out gas- and coal-fired conventional generation, and ice built up on wind turbine blades, reducing supply as demand peaked and forcing rolling blackouts.

As Roth points out, Texas chose not to connect to other power grids in the contiguous United States. The purpose of this interconnection is to provide emergency supply from an area with surplus energy to another area experiencing a shortage.

Perhaps the Lone Star State should relinquish a little of its cherished independence and seek strong electrical connections with its neighbors.

William Barlak, Burbank


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