Monday, September 25, 2017     Volume: 18, Issue: 29

Santa Maria Sun / Letters to the Editor

Aera is responsible

Rebecca Gowing - Santa Maria -

In a letter to this newspaper ("Dirty oil campaign," Sept. 14), a Buellton resident recently opened up regarding his concerns related to Aera Energy's oil extraction plan proposed for East Cat Canyon, all of which were speculative and not directly related to this specific project. Clearly the writer was not familiar with Aera or its reputation as a responsible operator focused on safety and on protecting the environment and human health.

As the owner of a cattle ranch directly opposite the East Cat Canyon project, I have a completely different perspective. I have worked with Aera for many years and have found them to be a company with integrity and that keeps its promises. The company has an excellent safety and environmental record.

Over the years Aera has demonstrated its commitment to being a good neighbor, and has always been transparent and accessible. Based on personal experience, I am confident that they will operate their project safely and responsibly, and as such I strongly support it.

More to the story in Lompoc

Justin Ruhge - Lompoc -

Regarding your article in the Sun entitled “A house divided” (Sept. 14), it covered the outward visible things happening, but did not address the “why.”

That is the effort of the ex-mayor, John Linn, to get back on the city government and to set things up to do so for the 2018 election. There is also a strong social envy by the three: Jim Mosby, Dirk Starbuck, and Victor Vega against Mayor Bob Lingl, Jenelle Osborne, and the city manager, Patrick Wiemiller. There is a big difference in education and income between these six. They have to show they are smarter than the mayor and city manager. An example is shown in the event earlier this year when Mosby, Starbuck, and Vega moved to remove the city manager and attorney from the dais because “they were too threatening to the citizens when talking to the council.” The clerk, attorney, and city manager have always been on the dais. They now sit way below them and far away.

This is what is really going on. The budget action by this threesome is going it paralyze the city. Without the sales tax it will be necessary to end most city services to pay for the state-mandated CalPERS assessments. They are also getting back at Mayor Lingl because he stopped the Linn-sponsored city racetrack, which cost Linn dearly. Linn also wants to eliminate three women from the city staff to make the budget balanced because they have given him a hard time. The code enforcement officer has cited him and Mosby often in the past. Another rumor is that Linn wants the city manager job, so Mosby and Vega are finding fault with him. The small group of citizens who vote in Lompoc (5,000) do not pay attention and do not know what is going on. That is the “why.”

Diablo needs to close

Jane Swanson - San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace -

The San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace (MFP) applauds PG&E for its decision to close the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant. However, our organization asserts that it would be in the best interests of the ratepayers and the citizens of California if the shutdown date was moved forward to 2019-20, rather than the 2024-25 dates proposed by PG&E.

Among the reasons for this position are the following:

• Early replacement of Diablo Canyon’s energy services is feasible.

• Solar, wind, and geothermal energy capacity is increasing rapidly.

• Innovation in energy storage capacity is advancing.

• Community choice aggregation is a growing movement.

• Aging plant equals increased risks.

• Diablo Canyon’s procurement of mechanical components began more than 50 years ago. It is unlikely that Diablo Canyon reactors are mechanically capable of operating reliably until 2025 with the outmoded and degraded equipment.

• PG&E has issued a list of “canceled projects” that indicates the corporation is reluctant to spend the funds needed for maintenance.

• Seismic risks.

The age and degradation of the plant, coupled with the likelihood of seismic activity in the area, creates economic and environmental risks to ratepayers that are not justified by the purported benefits of keeping the plant in operation for seven or eight more years.

Diablo Canyon’s once-through cooling system is responsible for 80 percent of the man-caused damage to the marine environment along the coast of California. It kills fish, eggs, and larvae and other wildlife through impingement and entrainment. The once-through cooling system also discharges tremendous amounts of heated water directly into adjacent waters, thereby damaging aquatic species including plankton and plants upon which all aquatic species are dependent for survival.

Weekly Poll
Who messed with the Sun's opinion poll last week?

Jim Mosby
John Linn
Bob Lingl
The Russians

| Poll Results