Northwest NEWS

January 22,2001

Editorial

Other power sources and improvements needed

Our public utilities have finally caught on. If the oil companies and coffee corporations can claim shortages and raise prices, why can't they?
   The news media show no real investigative desire to find out where the money goes from customers to power source.
   Now that the gas utility is controlled by the other power utility, electric, there is no competition - just a monopoly. Governor Locke, at first, sought the source for who makes the money on these price hikes, then suddenly fell silent.
   The Governor now suggests that all of us reduce consumption? In the meantime, megadevelopments of housing projects continue unabated. These developments demand large amounts of power.
   There has been no information via TV about an unusually dry year. We've had dry seasons before with no price hikes.
   Water turbines operate at the same cost whether a dry season or a wet one. When the turbines are powered by oil, wood or gas, the electricity costs go up.
   Could it be a coincidence that these utility hikes go up at the same time our Pacific King Salmon has been placed on the endangered species regulations? Both salmon and power utilities need water flow for their existence.
   Our officials have to acknowledge the fact that power demands are increasing very rapidly. Planning has ignored it.
   There has to be an acceptance of other power sources and improvements in them to become efficient. Wind and tide power have been researched. I believe that metal expansion in the desert can be used to harness electric power.
   George Slusser, Woodinville