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People’s column

Proposals needed in COVID fight

Editor, OBSERVER:

More than 200,000 people in our country have died from COVID-19, and the financial consequences of the pandemic reach far beyond that. The emergency relief package “HEROES 2.0” was released by the House of Representatives on Sept. 29. This funding is a start, but not a cure-all, to address this pandemic.

Our members of Congress must do more. The Make Medications Affordable by Preventing Pandemic Pricegouging Act and Taxpayer Research and Coronavirus Knowledge Act are two crucial, pragmatic pieces of legislation that would help ensure taxpayer funding for COVID-19 vaccines is transparently available and that treatments and vaccines are made affordable. To end this pandemic, we must ensure everyone has access to safe and effective healthcare.

Partners In Health Engage is a student-led organization driving forth the Partners In Health mission of bringing quality healthcare to the most vulnerable around our country and world. As a member of this organization, I urge Rep. Tom Reed to support legislation that strengthens domestic and global healthcare systems during this pandemic, and in particular, to cosponsor the these two proposals.

ELIZABETH HAHN,

Fredonia

Wearing mask is sign of respect

Editor, OBSERVER:

The coronavirus is deadly, especially to the elderly. Most of us have underlying conditions.

This fact has been proven by scientist. I live in a senior housing facility and I am appalled by the lack of care in wearing face masks and social distancing.

It is very upsetting when I am trying to avoid getting this deadly virus due to my own recent health issues and no one else has enough respect to wear face masks not only to protect themselves but to protect their neighbors?

It is so frustrating.

They say they don’t want to wear the mask because they are fine without them.

Yeah, but you won’t be when you contract the virus and cause your own death and the death of your neighbors. If you don’t believe me just ask the families of the 200,000 people that have died or the family man who lost nine of his immediate family members.

An old acquaintance of mine recently died of the coronavirus. It is so simple, if you don’t wear a mask you get the virus. Wake up people!

BETTY CALDWELL,

Brocton

Projects taking toll on environment

Editor, OBSERVER:

With the construction of Cassadaga Wind underway, Cuomo’s $33 billion energy plan for “renewables” continues like a plague across rural Western New York.

Recently, 30 men from Iron Workers Local 6 and Operating Engineers Local 17 picketed Cassadaga Wind to expose the use of out-of-state workers on the construction sites in Charlotte and Cherry Creek. Workers called out the license plates at the sites: Utah, California, Oregon, Maine, Illinois, Ohio, Indiana, Oklahoma, Texas, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Michigan and Idaho.

Cuomo’s “promise of good paying local jobs” was not true. (See 2-minute video “Hey Cuomo! What about those jobs?” Chautauqua Updates on YouTube). The $13 billion debt the state has accrued continues to grow as more people and businesses are driven out by bad policies. The original Cassadaga Wind owner, Ever Power, sued new owner, Innogy, for $69 million in non-payment. The case is not yet settled. Innogy has since dissolved being consumed by German company RWE. Is the state concerned about the viability of the project?

Those who live in the area can see the ongoing waste and destruction. Thousands of truckloads of gravel, cement, rebar, repair parts, fuel, water, oil for dust mitigation pass hour after hour, day after day. Equipment is transported on a fleet of ‘lowboys’ that carry tree removal shovels, tree grinders, bulldozers, excavators, earth compactors, off-road cement trucks, off-road gravel carriers, small, medium and large cranes which move from one of several turbine sites and back again — all at what — 6 miles to the gallon diesel fuel in hundred gallon tanks? Ironwood specialized trucks haul ‘swamp matts’ to build 47 miles of temporary roads across fields and through forests to allow the above mentioned vehicles plus 500-ton cranes to crawl across the landscape.

When it is done, the jobs gone, the habitats fragmented, the forest ground into chips, and the money banked in Germany, we are left with 37 twirling crucifixes of stupidity, which have a claimed capacity of 124.6 MW. NYISO describes WNY wind capacity as 10 % of that claimed.

Dunkirk’s NRG gas power plant at 635 MW could provide reliable, affordable, dispatchable power 24/7 on 98 acres. Each turbine takes 900 tons of steel, 2500 tons of concrete and 45 tons of plastic to build — the manufacture, transport, construction, and disposal of each turbine uses more energy than it can produce in its lifetime.

KAREN ENGSTROM,

Mayville

We’re losing our natural wonders

Editor, OBSERVER:

I truly am disheartened and fatigued, but not necessarily because of the political and health impacts of the era. I am tired of fighting, feeling incompetent and at a loss at every turn concerning global warming and climate change. I personally have fought the placement of gas wells, wind turbines and now solar with the knowledge that these industries are considered green.

In Ohio, in the Cleveland area, wind turbines are destined for Lake Erie. While in Chautauqua County — the farthest from the center of power in New York — solar and wind have become the hot-button issue. A solar farm is destined to be built on 6,000 acres of prime and relatively untouched land with the promise that this project will extend into the neighboring town of Westfield.

The trees and open land are so valued for their environmental impact will be sacrificed, allowing only small increments of power to be extracted from this tremendous a project. In the meantime Gov. Andrew Cuomo has issued an edict on the building of turbines on the New York side of Lake Erie, Chautauqua County in particular. Any green individual, which I consider myself to be, must understand that there is nothing green about the destruction of green habitat or the erupting of tons of contaminated sludge from the Lake as will happen in building hundreds of wind turbines. Yes, but are we as the frail human species going to poison and destroy the very thing we desire to protect.

Too many people thing that if it’s green it’s good. We need alternative energy but the destruction of the environment cannot be the answer. So what if bats and birds are killed and open land obliterated as long as we humans prevail, who cares. Don’t be a Not In My Back Yard individual. The major question remains can we survive yet foul and disregard our environment. How long can we eradicate the world around us for our phones, gadgets and myriads of electronic devices. How long are we going to allow the green of money to overtake and willingly sacrifice the green of the environment which is elemental to our survival.

This issue is vital to all of us who love Chautauqua County and appreciate the green spaces it offers.

S. GRIFFIN,

North East, Pa.

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