Email Letters: December 1, 2016
Bowie proposed gasifier is a pipe dream
While working as a chemical engineer for the world’s largest oil company, I was part of a team that performed a thorough two-year economic evaluation of a gasification project. This $3 billion gasifier would have processed petroleum coke, a material like coal, and was to be included in a $12 billion joint venture refinery project with a major U.S. refiner. Despite our best efforts, we could not make the economics work. The refinery has since been built without the gasifier.
Gasification of coal, tar sands bitumen, petroleum coke or any fossil fuel material, has high capital and operating costs. It is a far more expensive way to generate power when compared to natural gas, or non-subsidized solar and wind. Gasification, and the subsequent conversion of syn-gas to gasoline or diesel, has been around since WWII and it has never been economical. The low prices of oil, natural gas and alternatives means that gasification will never make money without government handouts (corporate welfare).
We must also have a clear understanding of what is meant by “clean coal.” While it is true that gasification can remove all sulfur, mercury and heavy metals from coal, it does not reduce in any way the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) released from the burning of coal in a conventional coal-fired power plant.
Bottom line: The Bowie proposed gasification plant at the idled coalmine near Paonia is an environmental and economic taxpayer boondoggle.
Grand Valley was great place for anniversary getaway
We would like to tell you about an experience we had for our 49th anniversary. We live in Montrose and decided we would spend the day in Grand Junction shopping and stay overnight. We shopped until we were worn out, and then went to a lovely dinner at the Rockslide restaurant. The waitress brought us some cheesecake that was decorated and said “49 years.” It was delicious. Thank you again. When we left the restaurant it was dark outside and we saw the beautiful lights – what a sight. We went back to the Quality Inn down on Horizon Drive and had a great breakfast they serve there. Thank you again, Quality Inn and staff.
Have a wonderful Christmas season.
Stop trying to stop those protesting the roundabout
To the person who wrote the editorial in the Nov. 11 Sentinel about stopping the roundabout protest, I see at least two problems. First, you never did your homework on why the protest was started. You seemed to be hung up on the “inconvenience objection.” Yes, that is a major concern, however, it is definitely not the number one reason. Since this has been in someone’s “think tank” for at least five years, I would assume the developers or proponents had sufficient time to gain public comments, suggestions, and ideas, or, at best, let the public know there were thoughts of working on the intersection. Remember, “we the people.” Get a fact sheet and consider our reasons for the protest.
Next, if you were at the CDOT meeting on Nov. 9, you must not have been listening. CDOT acknowledged having an alternative plan (actually shown at the meeting) that would upgrade traffic lanes, signal lights, and pedestrian/bicycle crossings. It was also suggested by attendees that caution signs/lights be used to slow traffic prior to the intersection. These upgrades came at a cost of $2 million less than the roundabout, plus less construction time. I have heard one person say that it “is a drop in the bucket,” but any way you slice it, it is taxpayer money. Why spend it, if it’s not necessary? This option has been placed on the back burner, if considered at all. The CDOT meetings were held to “tell” us what they planned to do, not ask for input – just another government entity powering over “we the people.” Incidentally, drivers cause most accidents – you cannot prevent all of them, and no, a roundabout is not the only option to reduce accidents. There is not a shortage of “out-to-lunch” or inattentive drivers on the road; maybe IQ tests should be required before issuing a driver’s license.
Meantime, we can all go to bed with “visions of grandiose roundabouts circling in our heads” and wondering what other surprises await us. When the “powers that be” have satisfied their obsession with putting roundabouts in all our intersections, we will be able to rename Grand Junction – Roundabout City.
Hillary Clinton has clearly broken the law
Several readers have recently asked the question, “What laws did Hillary Clinton break?” How about these?
By using her personal email address – @clintonemail.com – she kept her work documents from the government. Concealing government documents from the government when you work for it is a felony, punishable by up to three years in prison and permanent disqualification from holding public office. Failing to secure classified secrets in a government-approved facility or moving them to a non-secure facility outside the government’s control is a misdemeanor, punishable by a hefty fine and a year in jail. Using an email address that gives the clear impression that the user is not using a government server when she is, or one that creates the false impression that the emailer is using a government server when she is not, is also a felony.
She has clearly broken laws and the fact that the FBI advised against filing formal charges supported by a biased (in my opinion) Attorney General, does not negate the facts.
Rejections for health care treatment appear discriminatory
Hurry up and die, they say!
After 18 years, I’m without a doctor and so far my “applications” (what’s that all about?) have been denied by six different groups with five to seven practitioners in each group. These applications include vital information: ethnicity, age, insurance information, medical history, medications and Social Security information and you don’t even know if you’ll be accepted. What was that HIPPA thing again?
When the rejections came, I called and asked “Why?” The answer was “We don’t know…they (no names) never tell us why.” After the second rejection, I claimed that if they won’t tell me, it’s a discriminatory practice. I was referred to a “supervisor” in charge (an office manager maybe?). I relayed my discrimination accusation and was immediately told “No…that’s not the case.” I was told it might be because three area doctors retired in the past five months; another said it might be my insurance; another said it might be my medication list.
You see, I have endured chronic pain due to several chronic disease processes for the past 50 years and require pain medication at times. Well, because the feds and the CDC have determined that anyone who uses a pain medication is an addict, the physicians have been intimidated and threatened. So which areas are discriminatory to me?
I’m not alone; many cannot find a doctor here. We are being forced to go to an ER or urgent care without any monitoring for chronic diseases. Others have resorted to the physician concierge practices, spending an additional $70.00 - $250.00 a month to see a physician but they won’t file or take insurance (Medicare) payments. However, if they order other services or you have to be admitted to a hospital, you better keep all your insurance! What are we to do? Hurry up and die?
We cannot survive in a dead environment
We should not have to choose between nourishing our children and caring for our environment. They are basically one and the same, as we cannot survive in a dead environment. Nature operates with much greater harmony than humanity. We could learn a lot by studying the creatures of nature instead of killing them by destroying their environment.
It is time to create well-being on this planet, both for ourselves and the natural world around us. We deserve to have all we need to be healthy. And we cannot have this if we are allowing the destruction of other forms of life. There are many things that we spend money on that are extraneous to our well-being – or even destructive – like all of the chemicals that pollute our air, water and food; huge sports complexes; enormous salaries for many CEO’s, sports figures, and actors; advertising; big theme parks; corporate farming subsidies; and much more. We can make the changes necessary for all of us to thrive together.
KIM ST. GERMAIN
Colorado may have more dispensaries than Starbucks
According to a national mag, Colorado now has more marijuana dispensaries than there are Starbucks. All the liberals and libertarians are finally happy now with so many choices.
Our nation’s leadership has lost common sense
Some 55 years ago the Democratic Party supported the working class blue-collar people, tried to make it possible for them to have a good standard of living, and promoted large industry. They supported the labor unions, and in turn large companies who earned enough profit would pay good pay and benefits, all this due to the contract negotiating.
But our leadership – small and large – throughout our nation has lost all common sense. And our leadership has allowed the spirit of laziness to come in. In the last eight years, the Democratic Party has supported the idea of not working and having the government support people. This is what was happening in Cuba for 50 years. The government kept the income even for everyone, not allowing any prosperity.
RAFAEL A. SALAZ