Letters to the Editor, Feb. 11-14, 2017
Submissions from Park Record Readers
February 10, 2017
Deer Valley ranks No. 1 in environmental ethics, too
As a longtime season's pass holder at Deer Valley Resort, I would like to say that once again Deer Valley is #1! This time, not because of its great skiing, dining, ambiance and service, but because Deer Valley Resort was the first Utah ski resort to officially endorse an initiative to help reduce carbon emissions, which are contributing to global warming. Let's not let this year's great snowfall in Utah allow us to get complacent that things are okay. They are not. We must speak up and contact our Congress and community leaders about endorsing Carbon Fee and Dividend, which places a fee on fossil fuels at the source (at the well, the mine or port of entry). One hundred percent of net fees are returned to American households on a per capita basis. For more information, see citizensclimatelobby.org.
I'd like to commend Deer Valley's Bob Wheaton for so quickly and wholeheartedly supporting this crucial issue. And by the way if you or anyone you know still doesn't believe that climate change is real and happening every day on our Earth, please watch the amazing film that just showed at Sundance, "Chasing Coral," about how climate change is killing our coral reefs, vital to ocean and human life, or sadly, just drive to Salt Lake City when there is a high pressure inversion and breath the polluted air.
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Mountain Trails thanks Patagonia for its support
Here we are in the middle of a great winter, just putting Sundance in the rearview mirror and Deer Valley hosting another World Cup event; this is truly a happening town. Last Saturday evening Mountain Trails was privileged to attend another really cool event; the Grand Opening of the new Patagonia store.
Live music, cold brews (thanks to Park City brewing) cool commemorative Klean Kanteen tumblers all part of the fun to welcome one of the premier outdoor clothing companies to Park City. And Mountain Trails the recipient of not only proceeds generated from brews and such but Patagonia donated 5 percent of all sales to Mountain Trails. Local businesses partnering with local non-profits is a beautiful thing.
Lately Mountain Trails has partnered with some other local businesses which helps to insure the ongoing success of the work we do in the PC community. As the Executive Director for MTF I would hope to encourage other businesses to partner with one of their favorite non-profit and thus insure the important efforts that these organizations bring to our wonderful community.
The fun didn't end Saturday night, Patagonia is donating 5% of all sales for the next week to MTF. So if you are thinking Valentine's Day checkout the cool clothing and great staff at Patagonia. Thanks to all for making Park City such a great place to live.
Charlie Sturgis, Executive Director
Mountain Trails Foundation
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Climate change: the bad and good news
BAD: By ignoring climate science Trump and GOP led Congress are rolling the dice on the future of humanity. The Earth’s climate has been relatively stable during the last 11,000 years which allowed for human civilization development. By releasing huge amounts of CO2 and Methane (30x more potent greenhouse gas) we are moving much of the planet out of the range for human habitation. Climate Change thus far has happened slowly and yet has already caused the hottest years on record, more frequent and intense storms, drought, floods, wildfires, coral death and ocean acidification. However, Climate change is not a linear process and there are several tipping points, such as huge methane emissions from melting permafrost, complete loss of sea ice in the arctic or melt of Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. Once triggered, these will set in motion irreversible and exponential changes in the climate, such as sea level rise to 8 meters (26 ft) by 2100 and potentially to 66 meters. To understand more about Climate change, go to NASA.gov/climate. Oops, the site is already shut and will likely be “cleansed ” if it returns. Wow, is this America? We now have Alt Facts.
GOOD: There are solutions happening now and some proposed that have bi-partisan appeal. Solar energy is growing exponentially, costs down and job growth up. Solar in Utah now employs 75 percent more than the coal industry or 2700 vs 1540 (Deseret News, Mar 2016). Nationwide solar employs 4 times that of coal or 374,000 vs 86,000 (US DoE Report 2017). We need to build more large scale solar and provide assistance and retraining to workers in the dying coal industry.
Another sector with exponential growth is Electric Vehicles which do not have emissions and will reach cost parity with gas guzzlers by 2022 (Bloomberg). Lithium Ion batteries are rapidly coming down in cost enabling the EV revolution, but also spawning a new industry of battery backup of the grid to allow solar and wind power around the clock and replacing gas fired peaking plants. A really powerful proposal is the carbon fee and dividend plan, which is revenue neutral. The plan places a fee of $15 per ton on Carbon that escalates by $10 per year until we reach a safe level of CO2 emissions. The proceeds of the fee will be refunded to all the American people thus mitigating any price increases and making it revenue neutral. Go to citizensclimatelobby.org for more details and to learn how to take ACTION.
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Trump thinks it's time to hurt animals
As he was signing edicts hurting one group after another over the past two weeks, it was only a matter of time before Donald Trump got around to hurting animals – already the most oppressed sentient beings on earth.
The animals’ turn came yesterday – by taking down the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) site that reports on government regulation of roughly 9,000 animal handling facilities. These are laboratories, dog breeders, fur farms, circuses, zoos, and aquariums. The site is used every day by animal protection activists to monitor government enforcement of the 1966 Animal Welfare Act, the only effective federal law protecting animals.
Taking down the APHIS inspection site is a huge setback for animal protection. It will almost certainly lead to reduced government inspection of animal facilities and more animal suffering – a virtual repeal of the Animal Welfare Act.
Ironically, this oppressive act was launched by the same dark-of-night process as that of pulling more than 100,000 visas from thoroughly vetted Muslim immigrants one week earlier – no notice, no hearings, no due process, no public announcement.
The oppressive mindset doesn’t really care who the victims are. Hopefully, the courts will.
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Drivers should stop using center lane
It is getting to be ridiculous at “rush hour” when cars are using the center lane from the barn to Newpark. I have counted many cars using this lane to pass others to avoid waiting. On Tuesday the 7th I counted 26 cars using the center lane as I worked my way towards I 80.
Something needs to be done before someone gets hurt. While I am at it the bus lane is used as a passing lane as well.
There needs to be patrols out there and start ticketing people, no warnings, tickets is the answer because they will keep doing it.
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A thanks to Parley's Park PTA parents
Thank you so much to the PTA, PPES Parents and especially Erin Grady and Christa Graf for supporting and feeding us during Parent Teacher Conferences. We so appreciate our PPES community!
Alane Gaspari and staff