Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

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rightstar76
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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by rightstar76 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 11:03 am

I agree with you Oldranger. Public utilities like private ones are not immune from corruption. But letting PG&E go its merry way is irresponsible. Time for it to go public. Make and enforce rules. Clean house (though many public officials will have already run for the exits and joined lobbying firms). Then we can have a public utility that actually works for us. A positive step. A civilized one. A model for others. That's what's needed.








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mrphil
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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by mrphil » Wed Feb 13, 2019 2:55 pm

I'm going to also have to come to PG&E's defense a bit here.

They do an overall incredible job of maintaining their transmission lines, which, are over 125,000 miles in length. If you want to really fear an outcome, fear the state or regional governments taking over the power infrastructure. As just one example, this state has the worst roads in the entire country. They, just like PG&E is accused of, divert money to other uses...and they're better at it, as well as considerably more detrimental to the public's benefit, good faith funding, and often, safety. Politicians, ambulance chasers, and honestly, people that knew full well that they were underinsured going in, blaming PG&E is scapegoating, pandering, and searching for the deepest pockets on a disgusting level for the masses of dim witted sheeple of this state that feel that we should socialize just about everything, that they can shirk responsibility for their own actions and choices, and that are naive enough to believe for a minute that government is the answer/solution to all their problems....HA!...pissing into the wind in some delusional pipedream of a socialist Utopia.

I live in the very next big urban-wildland interface that's going to incinerate in the next Sonoma County fire. Us and our neighbors have aerial easements granted to PG&E totalling many, many miles. I trust them...they get it done, they keep it repaired and do it quickly, and they keep it as safe as humanly possible...but we also don't ignorantly get in their way (like so many) when they tell us that we need to have them trim trees, or threaten to sue them over the contents of our refrigerator when the grid needs to be de-energized when conditions warrant. For us personally, the very idea of having our local agencies and inept politicians in charge of any of it constitutes a terrifying proposition.

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overheadx2
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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by overheadx2 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 3:34 pm

I would hate for my power company to be run like the LADWP. Rape and pillage with no one to answer to so long as the county gets their share! Be careful what you wish for!

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by rightstar76 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 2:50 am

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Last edited by rightstar76 on Mon Aug 05, 2019 2:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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mrphil
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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by mrphil » Thu Feb 14, 2019 3:53 am

What "reliable service"? Here, we have Sonoma Clean Power. They're middle men in a Ponzi scheme, a la Eron, primarily brokering power that relies on trading carbon credits for their "green" power designation. They not only generate nothing, they utilize PG&E's infrastructure 100% for transmission. So let's take the "clean and green" electrons and mix them with the "dirty" electrons, then push them down the same wire. And when the wires break and arc out, will the evil "dirty" electrons be the only ones that start a fire in a forest that hasn't been adequately maintained either? During and after the Tubbs fire, Nun's fire..... PG&E's crews were everywhere. SCP, nowhere to be found. They own nothing, not even trucks, and certainly no maintenance resources and infrastructure beyond their downtown office building and a few hybrid cars for their key executives. They wouldn't know how to fix a transformer or restring a power line if their lives depended on it. In the meantime, the NGO/county made $180 million in profit last year (por nada), established a new bureaucracy that is only spending fractionally on the acquisition of power plants of their own, and instead is diverting money to subsidizing the purchase of hybrid vehicles.

Pete Wilson was an idiot. And while some might argue that deregulation created consumer choice, it primarily started a gold rush of entities looking to get their piece of the pie...not unlike this whole marijuana legalization joke, that was and is only seen the cities/counties/state as finally being able to generate a profit from drug dealing (their sometimes 70% markup that's sending a now "legal" fledgling industry, as well as consumers, back to the black market in droves...which, in so many cases, hasn't panned out as planned because they're just as greedy (and far less competent) as any private corporation could ever hope to be. The difference is: private corporations have to answer to investors and operate under regulations as to rates and safety, whereas government agencies can just raise taxes and change the rules when it suits them (pension obligations??). Utilities will be no safer, better, or responsibly run if in the hands of government. In fact, when you look at water/sewer, rates go up constantly when run by counties and municipalities. "SAVE WATER!"...."ooops, we forgot that we needed money to maintain and build infrastructure, and that we aren't making enough to do it....btw, your rates are now going up 5% a year for the next three years for your efforts." Brilliant! Really instills a lot of confidence in their abilities and motives. But hey, companies like PG&E are evil when they need to pass on operating costs, right?

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by hikerchick395 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 5:43 pm

If the problem with PG&E didn't exist, a fire similar to the Camp Fire was still in the works. People up there in Paradise and surrounding areas have burn piles. What are the chances that EVERYONE extinguishes their pile or, even keeps a good eye on things while burning. Hey, I've seen piles unattended many times. Or there could be a lightning strike. (My sis had three lightning strikes on her property after the power went out. So no water. The small fires were put out with shovels. Luckily someone was there to do that.) So throw in the wind event and you could have the same fire storm scenario. Like I mentioned, I had been worried about it for years.

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by longri » Thu Feb 14, 2019 7:08 pm

hikerchick395 wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 5:43 pm
If the problem with PG&E didn't exist, a fire similar to the Camp Fire was still in the works. People up there in Paradise and surrounding areas have burn piles. What are the chances that EVERYONE extinguishes their pile or, even keeps a good eye on things while burning. Hey, I've seen piles unattended many times. Or there could be a lightning strike. (My sis had three lightning strikes on her property after the power went out. So no water. The small fires were put out with shovels. Luckily someone was there to do that.) So throw in the wind event and you could have the same fire storm scenario. Like I mentioned, I had been worried about it for years.

Exactly. When the pilot is out and gas fills the house who blames the spark that sets it off?

PG&E has it's issues and some degree of culpability, no doubt, but they are a large target, a scapegoat. California has become a tinderbox.

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by dave54 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 9:30 pm

People keep talking about excessive fuel loading for the Camp Fire when fuel loads were NOT abnormally high in the area. The area between the ignition near Pulga and the town last burned in 2008. The pre-settlement era fire return interval in the Ishi Wilderness just north of the Paradise area was 10 years.
Fuel loads were within historic range of variability.

The Woolsey Fire at the same time started its run in a 2003 burn -- 15 year old fuel.
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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by wildhiker » Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:13 am

Dave54 points out that fuel loads in the Camp Fire area were not abnormally high before it started. That's true in the forest and brush areas. But the fuel load in the town - in the form of houses not built to modern fire-resistant standards - was enormous. This was really a massive urban fire sparked by wind-driven embers from a more modest wild fire. Did you notice how many trees appeared to be unburnt or only singed in the photos of the aftermath, even though all the houses between those trees were burned to the ground? Sure, more brush and forest will burn due to a century of fire suppression, global warming making everything drier, and more people (thus more ignition sources) in and around the wild lands. But the real problem comes when the towns burn. Seems like we can do something about that by the way we build our structures.
-Phil

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Re: Everyone's thoughts on what's really causing fires

Post by rightstar76 » Fri Feb 15, 2019 6:52 am

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Last edited by rightstar76 on Mon Aug 05, 2019 2:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

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