The power blackout of Oct. 9 was a wake-up call for Humboldt County ("County Officials: Prepare for Days Without Power," posted online Oct. 8). People scrambling to get basic supplies, waiting in gas lines for hours and those with medical conditions requiring power to run their oxygen machines or refrigeration to keep their medicines cold, panicking. And we got off easy. Early predictions said that the blackout might last several days. This is just the beginning of these climate change crisis related episodes.
The outage in Humboldt County wasn't necessarily due to red flag conditions here but because we are dependent on two transmission lines that go through areas where they had to deenergize the lines due to high wind conditions. The thing is that we are an energy island, we don't generate enough of our own power and have to import electricity from other parts of the state, so if transmission is shut down somewhere up the food chain, we're out of luck. In order to deal with this problem, we must become more energy independent. We need more renewable energy generation right here where we need it. The Humboldt Wind Project is a proposed wind farm that will be looking to get a permit from the county this year.
It is essential that we let the board of supervisors know that we want these projects to be built to supply us with local, renewable power.
Mary Sanger, Manila