Letters to the Editor, May 10-12, 2017
Submissions from Park Record readers
Local energy conservation efforts should include biomass
Having read two long and interesting letters to The Park Record concerning climate change, conservation, and renewable energy, I would like to add one important element to the discussion. My purpose is not to debate either previous contributor, but to add a significant piece of information.
Biomass from our forests constitutes a relevant source of nearly carbon-neutral renewal energy. As one who has built a wood pellet plant, the topic is familiar to me. Yes, the cutting of trees, transportation, and production of fuel from forest byproducts does take energy; but it is a small fraction of the energy of the sun that has been stored in our commercial forests.
Before I go further, understand that I am talking about wood biomass from sustainably managed forests, not our redwoods or rainforests. Limbs and bark that would ordinarily be left to rot in the forest, producing greenhouse gasses without capturing energy, can be used (along with wood and bark) for energy production or heating applications.
But wait! Burning one ton of wood (for energy and not esthetics) produces over two tons of carbon dioxide! Yes, but the replacement trees planted in a managed forest breathe in that CO2 and breathe out oxygen. A good deal for all of us, considering also that wood pellets do not produce particulates (smoke) and other emissions that come from fireplaces.
Finally biomass (which comes in more forms than just wood) is a renewable energy source that is available when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow. Finally, I would rather see preservation of responsibly managed forests than widespread conversion to less environmentally friendly uses.
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Park City Visitor Center needs recycling bin
I congratulate Park City for its efforts and achievements to reduce global warming. Park City stands as a shining example in our state. It is with open arms, good strong coffee, and paleo baked goods that the Park City Visitor Center welcomes progressive tourists who might otherwise fear entering a red state to reach world renowned powder.
But what do the unsuspecting visitors find while perusing the brochures about recycling, upcoming documentary films, and environmental fundraisers? They look for a place to recycle their used coffee cups and Park Record and … find that the Park City Visitor Center doesn’t recycle.
Salt Lake City
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Trump’s tax cut plan leaves out many Americans
President Trump’s recent plan for tax reform gives huge tax cuts to corporations and the very rich. Totally forgotten are hard-working Americans at the bottom — those who can’t take a mortgage interest deduction because they don’t own a home. Those not from wealthy families (like the Trump children) and won’t be getting a massive, untaxed inheritance.
Taxpayers fund over $400 billion in tax incentives to help wealthier Americans build more wealth. But nothing exists to help lower-income workers save. President Trump’s plan would make things worse. His tax proposal will widen the gross wealth inequality that already exists. In 2013, the top one percent owned 40 percent of the nation’s wealth and the bottom 40 percent owned almost nothing.
Please join me in calling Utah Senators Orrin Hatch and Mike Lee and asking them to work for tax reform that is fair for everyone, especially those at the bottom working to build a better life. Thank you!
Debbie Baskin, RESULTS volunteer
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Film moves resident to help India’s orphans
How many of you watched the movie “Lion” and were as heartbroken as I at the fact that 80,000 children in India go missing each year? Remember also their horrible living conditions and the evil people that prey upon those children? It brought me back to another movie, “Slumdog Millionaire.” After watching these movies, I was haunted by the plight of these poor children, and yet I didn’t do anything about it! That is why I was so happy to discover that at lionmovie.com we are given the ability to donate to two charities that specifically help these homeless children. I hope you will all join me and go to the website, click on the screen, and help get those poor children off the streets!
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CONNECT congratulates The Park Record
At a time when local news outlets are disappearing, Park City is fortunate to have vibrant media that inform and question, keeping the whole community engaged in subjects that matter. As mental health advocates, we know that the media has been essential in drawing continuing attention to issues that make many people uncomfortable. Mental Health Awareness Month and CONNECT’s other consumer education programs would not be possible without the community-wide coverage we have received. We know that other local non-profits also owe much of their success to the local journalists who report their stories.
Therefore, we are pleased — but not surprised — that The Park Record has received so many awards from the Utah Press Association. Publisher Andy Bernhard and Editor Nan Chalat Noaker have cultivated a team of talented journalists who deserve the kudos they have received. Long hours, tedious meetings, difficult interviews, complicated stories — it must be particularly satisfying to be recognized ‘Best In State’ by their peers, but the awards also give us, their readers, an opportunity to say we how much we appreciate their contributions to our community.
Lynne and Ed Rutan, Board Members
CONNECT Summit County
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Chefs cook up a successful fundraiser
Congratulations to Chef Wars Winner Shawn Armstrong and Survivors Michael Zachman and Tim Carpenter. They battled it out and created impressive dishes for our distinguished panel of judges Eliza James, Larry Warren and Ted Scheffler.
It was a heated competition but all in good fun especially with the added participation of our guests who bid for the honor of cooking with the chefs, as well as everyone who joined in the cheering. Our wonderful Emcee Jennifer Hardman kept us all entertained and engaged in the action. The event would not have been possible without the generosity of our hosts Seth & Casey Adams of Riverhorse on Main. Adorable 4-legged guest SubaBleu of Mark Miller Subaru, a rescue pet himself, reminded us all that this unique culinary party was to benefit the pets and programs of Nuzzles & Co. On behalf of the animals whose rescue and adoption you have made possible. Thank you!
Claire Desilets, Purple Paw Director
Nuzzles & Co.
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“History buffs will tell you that Park City suffered many devastating fires fanned by canyon winds,” writes Andrea Barros. “It could happen again if we do not reduce wildfire fuel.”