Snow storm uncovers folly of denying people natural gas

By Jason Williams
Taxpayers Association of Oregon

Nearly 200,000 Oregonians had lost power this weekend during the cold blast.

In my neighborhood, we lost power early Saturday morning and in a matter of hours nearly half of the neighborhood was empty and abandoned, like a ghost town, as people fled to places out of town.  Upon calling local hotels to escape, people found out that many hotels were not answering their phones or simply having no ring-connection on the call.

Neighbors who had natural gas fireplaces were able to have heat and remain home.   A family friend who just had a natural gas generator installed, couldn’t tell if she lost power (which she did) because the switch was so seamless as there was no signs that there was a problem.   I wish more people could have this perfect, simple, seamless back-up option during a crisis.

It was eerie doing a safety check on the people in my street.   One neighbor who fled their home had their front door wide open, blown open by the fierce wind.  Snow was piled up inside.   Another neighbor wept when I showed up with needed supplies at her front door.   Still, a third neighbor who had no working heating option whatsoever, asked if she was likely to die if she stayed in her home overnight in 17-degree cold.

Yet, despite natural gas being the saving grace in my neighborhood, liberal politicians in Eugene and Milwaukie are trying to ban installation of natural gas into new homes, so that people will not have it as a choice of heating or as a choice of emergency back-up.    Governor Tina Kotek just installed a natural gas generator into the Governor’s mansion at taxpayers expense — she should be in favor of citizens having the same choice.

As environmentalists push natural gas bans they also push us to become more dependent on solar energy — which is not working in our snow storm.

Do we really want half a neighborhood getting up and fleeing during the next snow storm?  Or do we want citizens who can take care of themselves and be self-independent, safe and sound?

Don’t forget that President Biden’s administration has been working on rules against natural gas stoves.  Which prompted this joke:

Additionally, Biden has been targeting natural gas furnaces as well, a Wall Street Journal commentary noted, ” Though ostensibly a fuel-neutral efficiency standard, the Energy Department’s furnace regulation disproportionately burdens gas models relative to electric ones. “The proposed furnace rule has at least as much to do with the Biden administration’s war on natural gas [as] it does with saving energy,” says Mark Krebs, a natural-gas industry consultant, in an interview. The agency is moving ahead with this proposal despite its own analysis that natural gas is less than one-third as expensive as electricity on a per unit energy basis. The final rule could be out soon, and the only gas furnaces likely to survive will be more expensive and harder to install in millions of homes, especially older and space-constrained ones.”

This snow storm is a vindication for natural gas and a pox on liberal politicians’ over-reach.

Bonus snow storm survival question for our readers:  During the power outage a neighbor gave me a Mr. Heater Buddy propane heater.  Instructions say it is useful for indoor use but in a ventilated area.   My neighbor says a living room would be considered a ventilated area.  I say, without electricity, no air is moving in the vents and it would not be a ventilated area.   Who is right?  Would you use propane in such a similar situation?  Share your opinions on this on Facebook or email use below;

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