Friday letters: Holy Cross rates, graffiti, HC board endorsement, wolves, appreciations |

Friday letters: Holy Cross rates, graffiti, HC board endorsement, wolves, appreciations

Supporting HCE rate restructure

As a longtime member/customer of Holy Cross Energy I support its proposed energy rate restructuring. 

Our home and my husband’s home business has had a grid-tied PV system for over 15 years. We increased our PV capacity two years ago to cover the increased demand of charging an EV. Both installations were beneficiaries of Holy Cross Energy’s support. We are fortunate to be members of a progressive electrical cooperative and support their proposal to separate the cost of electricity delivery from consumption.

A grid-tied system relies on a functional electrical grid to serve as both a ‘battery’ for storage of excess electrons and a delivery system when more are needed. Holy Cross consistently provides the reliability that is necessary. Paying a charge that is specifically targeted for ensuring future reliability of the grid is a piece of this energy system. 

Perhaps the solar installation companies who view this as a detriment to their business might take time to change how they work with clients and their marketing message; a functional grid is the most important piece of a grid-tied PV system. Our monthly charge is a small price to pay for access to the Holy Cross grid for this two-way electron delivery system.

We installed solar not for its enormous financial benefits, but because we felt that it was one way to become more conscious consumers of electrons while making a stand in support of the planet. The science is clear; planetary climates are changing. Our actions at home have consequences on a global scale. 

While rooftop PV is not the only answer to this climate conundrum it is one piece of the puzzle and a way for homeowners to be proactive consumers while educating themselves and their neighbors on the complexity of reliably providing electrons while respecting the vulnerability of planetary systems.

We fully support HCE’s proposed rate structure changes. These changes are proactive and will help HCE continue to provide reliable electricity to its members while moving towards a renewable energy future that will benefit us all.

Susy Ellison, Carbondale

Halt graffiti

Gang graffiti is spreading in downtown Glenwood Springs and the mayor and City Council are asleep. It is well established that once gang graffiti is loosed upon a community it becomes impossible to stop. 

Carl L. McWilliams, Glenwood Springs

Brooks for HCE board

I’ve known and worked with Linn Brooks for a long time, from her days in the Eagle Valley with a private engineering firm and then all through her long tenure at Eagle River Water and Sanitation District. 

She has the integrity, experience and management skills that a Holy Cross Energy Board member needs. Linn knows well and has worked tirelessly through her tenure with ERW&SD on the challenges we face with water, energy and the climate crisis. She also knows the Northern District of HCE better than most.

I’ve studied the interviews and bios of the other candidates, and while there are some very good people in the running, I believe Linn is by far and away the best-qualified for the job. She has my full support and I hope she will have yours.

Ken Neubecker, Glenwood Springs

Aspen Camp for the Deaf appreciations

The Aspen Camp of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing would like to recognize the Roaring Fork Leadership Cohort’s team of six who recently put on a fundraiser for the Camp via its Pre-Hang-out Event at the April 14 TACAW Motet Concert. 

This ambitious group of individuals: Kristen Strope, Emily Pixberg, Hana Maclean, Alex Lincoln, Mark Viola and Tyler Stevens are valley residents who cared enough about helping the camp to not only raise a significant amount of money that will go towards this year’s Camp programs but also put the Camp in the spotlight for an evening. 

The Roaring Fork Leadership program is strengthening the valley with its community focused leadership development program. The ACDHH Board is so grateful to it and this winter/spring team.

In addition, the Aspen Camp of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing would like to extend huge appreciation to Aaron Aeschliman and Katrina Toews of Carbondale and their church’s connection with the Colorado/New Mexico chapter of the Mennonite Disaster Service (MDS). 

Under their leadership and organizational efforts, a group of 30+ individuals, some local from the Roaring Fork Valley, came out for a weekend of service and volunteer work. Their contribution to the Camp’s current projects included moving furniture, ongoing outdoor fire mitigation, deep cleaning, and the literal laying of groundwork for an ADA ramp for future “deafplus” participants attending our programs. 

Deaf high school students in our upcoming Job Skills Training Camp will benefit from the efforts of these volunteers. The Board and its community are grateful to these amazing helping hands.

Karen A. Immerso, Snowmass

Keep open mind to wolf science

I teach college science. It’s rewarding to see a student’s mind expand. 

Like my student from Boulder who views prairie dogs as vermin but was surprised to learn that they create languages with vocabularies of over 100 words (and if you visit them often enough, they’ll name you and will remember your name years after your last visit). Then learning their vital roles in providing food and habitat for the entire grassland ecosystem elicited a strong “wow!” when he realized that removing them from the land impacts the same ecosystem that his family relies upon for water, food and air. 

When we keep an open mind to science, our paradigm shifts. It becomes less about reading sensationalized click bait and more about our species’ relationship to the webs and cycles that connect all living and nonliving parts of the planet; and we rely on these connections for everything we do — yes, even the economy too. So, as you read the news about wolves in Colorado, I ask you to keep an open mind to the science. Don’t let false narratives and centuries of myth feed your primal fear — we are not on their menu. They won’t sneak into grandma’s house or huff and puff and blow your house down. 

Seek out the decades of science that show apex predators are vital to an ecosystem. Hear from ranchers who understand this, especially in the Great Lakes states (where wolves were never extirpated). For example, in 2014-15, the USDA found that wolves were responsible for just 0.89% of cattle and sheep losses in these states. 

Whether you believe climate change is human-caused or not, you recognize the climate is changing, and our future will bring more extremes. Wolves have the power to help buffer our water quality and quantity, our air quality, our loss of biodiversity, and our overall quality of life — yes, even our economy, too — against the oncoming environmental consequences of our species. Wow! Aldo Leopold once said, “Only the mountain has lived long enough to listen objectively to the howl of a wolf.” I beg you, as wolves are introduced into our mountain ranges, to think like a mountain.

Sarah R. Gordon, Glenwood Springs

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