Letters to the editor — Fossil fuels, leaf blowers, election reforms, COVID-19

What climate activists didn’t see

Re: “Climate activists in oil and gas industry – On visit, they found ordinary people who want to support their families and protect the environment”, by Benji Backer, Danielle Butcher and Stephen Perkins, Opinion 20 November.

We can agree on one thing: As climate change activists, we fail to highlight the fossil fuel industry’s commitment to reducing emissions. That’s because they didn’t.

I spent 14 years documenting pollution from oil and gas sites in West Texas. Your guides have left out some harsh realities of oil and gas production.

Right now, oil and gas companies cannot operate without polluting. Pollution will continue because that’s how the equipment works. The Permian Basin – where you claim to have seen “thriving and active fields” – is now the world’s biggest oil and gas polluter.

It’s not just the climate. The air you breathed in Midland was full of invisible, deadly gases that cause a wide range of health problems, increase the risk of cancer and even cause sudden death. People who live and work alongside toxic pollution are forced to suffer serious health effects while the fossil fuel industry continues to make record profits.

The hard truth of West Texas oil and gas is that any promises to cut emissions are empty. The best way to responsibly switch to renewables is to leave fossil fuels in the ground.

Visit earthworks.org and see for yourself.

Sharon Wilson, Dallas

Earthworks, Senior Field Attorney and Gas Optical Imaging Thermographer

Biden’s energy policies hurt the US

The US oil and gas industry is very important to the state of Texas. It is also very important to our country’s energy needs and our national security. Our domestic production of oil and gas by companies like Chevron, ExxonMobil and others serves as security and protection against OPEC as well as OPEC+, which includes Russia.

Obviously, it is in our best interest to fight for US energy independence. So why then does our president not embrace our oil and gas producers and treat them as valuable assets instead of liabilities? President Joe Biden’s energy policies are clearly hurting his own American people, plain and simple.

Tom Hopkins, Garland

Let wear and tear eliminate gas tools

Re: “City bans gas-powered lawn tools – Environmental factors drive proposed change for all in 2027 or 2030” Monday Metro news.

When looking to force the transition from gas to electric lawn tools, Dallas council members should first look at the average lifespan of gas powered lawn tools. When I was young, lawn tools were designed to last much longer than the tools we use today. Instead of picking a random date to start the total ban, the city could consider banning the sale of new gas tools and waiting until the expected life of the gas tools comes to an end before banning the use of gas tools.

This would provide a more natural transition, as residents and lawn care companies would simply replace expired gas tools with electric models before the ban goes into effect.

Kenneth Mathias, Grand Prairie

A wish list with changes to choices

Since I’ve just been through another election, may I be so bold as to make a few suggestions about upcoming elections, whether local, state, or national?

Campaigning will be limited to 30 days prior to the election date, which also includes a ban on announcing candidacy for any elected office prior to 30 days. Any candidate who allows a verifiable untrue or derogatory statement to be made about his opponent will be fined $100,000 or 10% of his campaign fund – whichever is greater.

In addition, any campaign sign left in public view one week after the election will be confiscated by the local government and the candidate will be fined $500 for each sign confiscated.

All voting will be on paper ballots, as it was before the election was “allegedly stolen” because it is impossible to hack a paper ballot, except in Duval County in the 1940s. Machine counting is allowed.

And finally, no candidate can serve more than two terms, whether consecutive or concurrent. I realize that these changes will never be made because the people who would make the changes would never let it happen.

Jim Cooper, Waxahachie

Different Texans for the wrong reasons

Texas residents seem to have different goals than other states. Texas deregulated its reliable and cost-controlled power grid and now “enjoys” some of the highest power costs in America. Governor Greg Abbott is not adequately funding mental health services, and Texas has prisons and certain streets full of mentally ill and homeless people. Abbott put even more guns on the street.

Many Texas politicians deny global warming and pollution, and now Texas citizens have some of the most polluted air and water in America.

Texas voted to continue these policies in the midterm elections. It looks like Texas will continue to enjoy its goals for another four years.

Fred Wells, Dallas

No COVID yet

Re: “Report: 94% of US infected – But high rate may also mean protection against new diseases,” Sunday story.

Yes, I am in the rarefied 6% of the US that has not been infected with COVID-19 and all its shape-shifting variants. Neither Dr. Anthony Fauci nor the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would be impressed by my prevention efforts; maybe it’s just the luck of the draw.

I was in China on Christmas 2019 when the insidious virus was making its way to the United States. For the past 2 1/2 years, I’ve been hanging out with my friends at local pubs in Plano. I fly several times a month and, oh, I’m considered high risk at age 72.

I followed the masking order and had two COVID shots and three booster shots. I guess the Grim Reaper isn’t harvesting Republicans in Plano. For once, it’s nice to be part of the 6%.

James Howard Sherrard, Plano

We welcome your thoughts in a letter to the editor. See the instructions and send your letter here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *