Letters to the editor, June 4- June 10

The Editor:

SSA/PIT’s plans for a coal shipping terminal (GPT) at Cherry Point will, indeed, be a “game-changer,” one that creates wealth for a few, while residents of Whatcom County will suffer and “pay the price” with health issues, environmental destruction and threats on tourism and fishing industries.

SSA/PIT ignores the reality that shipping and burning more coal elsewhere contributes to worldwide climate change. Their tactics are divisive as they team up with pro-coal groups in Montana and Wyoming for support. Because the Crow Nation signed an agreement with Cloud Peak Energy in 2013 to mine the coal on their land, GPT is now dubbed the “Crow Terminal.” If more mines are developed in Wyoming and Montana, more infrastructures will be required and more trains will come to Cherry Point.

In less than 200 years, human activity has changed the chemistry of the earth’s atmosphere by continuing to burn more and more fossil fuels. This has caused the 800,000-year average of atmospheric CO2 to increase from 250 parts per million (ppm) to an all-time high of 400 ppm. The result is an ever-warming climate: the earth cannot keep up with absorbing such huge and unnatural amounts of CO2.

We are now witnessing disastrous weather anomalies, changing weather patterns, warming oceans, and melting glaciers. We have been warned for decades, but continue to mine coal, destroy mountains, drill into and fracture the earth, resulting in polluted water and air. The Dust Bowl in the ’30s was the worst man-made environmental disaster in America. The farmers in the Midwest were warned to not to rip up the grasslands, exposing the moisture-laden topsoil. They ignored the advice and plowed up 100 million acres to plant wheat, which resulted in hellacious dust storms that destroyed their world.

We have not learned from the past, succumbing to the enticements of large and ever more powerful corporations who receive huge subsidies while reaping record windfall profits. We no longer have the excuse of not knowing, as technology has given us unlimited access to information. I believe another ecological disaster is unfolding before us. It is up to all of us to understand the facts: fossil fuels need to be replaced with sustainable energy sources. If we don’t act, history will surely repeat
itself.

Christine Westland

Birch Bay

The Editor:

It would be great to have a dog comic in the newspaper. Our dogs love us unconditionally.

Susan Schneider

Birch Bay

The Editor:

Small pet owners, don’t let your pet become an eagle’s dinner. I have seen numerous flyers about lost pets and most of them are small animals. I recently attended a presentation at Birch Bay State Park about our local eagles. The presenter has been studying and photographing local birds and nests for 10 years.

He related that a large bald eagle nest in Ferndale recently fell to earth and when it was examined, it contained 24 pet collars. One also fell in Birch Bay and contained four collars. This is indisputable proof that the eagle can and does attack and carry off small pets. Add to these counts captured pets that weren’t wearing collars.

Every spring the eagles nest near our beaches and creeks and then need to find food to feed their chicks. This is a time to keep an especially close watch over your pet. If you leave your dog in the yard or allow your kitty to roam, don’t be surprised if it goes missing. If you see an eagle going overhead frequently it is probably feeding nestlings; it’s time to be cautious. Make a mental note to be extra vigilant next spring.

Sonia Hurt

Blaine

The Editor:

I’m quite upset and feel like the city doesn’t care about downtown businesses; actions speak louder than words, and power tripping bullies on the council is not the direction we should be going for a city that deserves so much more downtown and is striving to achieve success as a small downtown. Do we really want to help push folks out of coming downtown and prevent them from returning? The city in all their wisdom is helping do just that.

We need more “Why not” thinkers and doers on city council, and not so many “Why” thinkers. Sure, maybe encourage some of our youth to participate, but it’s not an age thing, like I mentioned in my letter of May 7. I didn’t mean that; it’s a more of a “How do I see the world,” and “How can I make it better,” thing.

Our council should not be so xenophobic, it hurts our town and our future success. I was told all downtown merchants will receive letters to remove their street signs – this is inconceivable and insane. They make the town look quaint and welcoming. I over-edited my letter of May 7; no, I will not get over this, it’s how our businesses help pay taxes and direct folks to our storefronts. Taxes help contribute to city officials’ salaries, have they forgotten that? Where is the support?

City officials have lost their minds. How can they be so insensitive and anti-downtown Blaine? We need new council members and have needed them for many years. We need more proactive, positive members, ones that support opportunities that benefit our town, rather than throwing monkey wrenches in every great idea or developer’s project that comes along.

If you feel the same, send your letters to our council, attend meetings if you can stomach it, or at least fire off a few words of support to this paper. All we need is a majority of council members to make great things happen here and give back what this town deserves, a fighting chance!

Bill Becht

Blaine

The Editor:

A few weeks ago, a member of our family passed away unexpectedly in Canada. Although he was a Canadian citizen, it fell to the members of the Blaine Police Department to notify us of his death. Rather than telephone us or send an email, two officers visited us to give us the news.

We want to take this opportunity to thank Blaine Police Officer Torgeson and Support Officer Ingram for the supportive, patient, sensitive and professional manner in which they managed their visit with us.

In an era in which the activities of the police throughout America are sensationalized and under constant scrutiny, one often loses sight of the vast majority of outstanding public servants who work daily on our behalf, often in difficult situations like the one that brought them to our door.

The way in which the officers handled the details of our situation was comforting. They went the extra mile with us to be sure that we understood what had happened, and the community resources that were available to us.

Blaine is very fortunate to have such a fine group of law enforcement professionals. We commend officers Torgeson and Ingram, and we thank them immensely for their support and service in a time of need.

Daphne and Bryan Johnson

Blaine

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