California Wildfire Mitigation: “Turn Out the Lights…”

Guest drive-by by David Middleton

PG&E Could Shut Off Power For Millions To Prevent Wildfires

February 7, 2019


Pacific Gas & Electric could shut off power to more than 5 million customers when extreme weather conditions are ripe for wildfires to break out, the company said Wednesday. It’s an expansion of the company’s previous power shutoff program, which only let the company turn off power to about half a million customers.

Several power companies submitted their required “wildfire mitigation plans” to California regulators this week. But PG&E’s plan may be especially consequential, given that its power lines have been blamed for several Northern California fires over the past few years. The company filed for bankruptcy last month in the wake of billions of dollars in potential liability after two years of wildfires.

The company told the state’s public utilities commission that to address wildfire risk, “shutting off power will likely be necessary and may need to be performed more frequently due to the extreme weather events and dry vegetation conditions.”

“We understand the urgency of the situation, that lives could be at stake and that we need to move more quickly,” the company said.



Rather than actually addressing the problem, just shut off the electricity…

Who would have guessed that the solution to both climate change and wildfires was shutting off electricity?  Apparently, these actual solutions are off the table…

Why California’s Best Strategy Against Wildfire Is Hardly Ever Used

Cal Fire Chief Blames Wildfires on Mismanaged Forests

California’s deadliest wildfires were decades in the making. ‘We have forgotten what we need to do to prevent it’

Mismanaged, overcrowded forests provide fuel to historic California wildfires, experts say

Climate change is the new scapegoat for failed forest and water policy

Trump was right: California’s forests have been grossly mismanaged

I guess since California has ruled out proper wildland management, they’re left with blaming it on climate change and/or President Trump and shutting off electricity.  Even if climate change is partially to blame, there’s nothing that can be done to “fix” the climate on a human (or any other) time scale.  So… I guess it’s Back to the Pleistocene! (AKA the Green New Deal)… “Turn out the lights, the party’s over”…

This just in… The automotive industry just unveiled the first Green New Deal compliant automobile…

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February 12, 2019 6:11 pm

Closing time
You don’t have to go home but you can’t stay here.

Greg Cavanagh
February 12, 2019 6:19 pm

So, combat stupidity with stupidity. I don’t think it’ll work.

Reply to  Greg Cavanagh
February 12, 2019 6:32 pm

Stupid squared 🙂

Reply to  TRM
February 12, 2019 7:10 pm

When will we reach Peak Stupid?

Bryan A
Reply to  damp
February 12, 2019 7:51 pm

DC already has. AOC made it Stupid squared

Reply to  damp
February 12, 2019 7:53 pm

there is no peak, its just Ocasio Cortez clones, all the way up

Reply to  damp
February 12, 2019 8:17 pm

Stupidity has no limits.

Reply to  SMC
February 12, 2019 8:36 pm

You win dude/dudette.

TheStupid is immeasurable and unfathomable . . .

Reply to  SMC
February 13, 2019 11:55 am

No limits, but I think the Democrats have reached a tipping point. Will they go over the edge or pull back? They have left themselves with the choice of becoming the Democrat-Socialists, or losing a fourth of their voters.

That’s what happens when you promte the idea that there is a free lunch (and energy, and healtcare, and education, and a basic income, and…).

The crazy thing is, they could have relied on those voters without promising them anything. They need more votes from those to the right of where they have been campaigning, not left.

nw sage
Reply to  SMC
February 13, 2019 6:45 pm

And finally, you just can’t fix STUPID!
It is a universal truth

Reply to  damp
February 13, 2019 3:24 am

Never! There are never-ending, ever-growing opportunities for the expansion of ‘stupid.’ It is a natural part of the human condition.

Reply to  Greg Cavanagh
February 13, 2019 4:49 am

Don’t take responsibility for your failures. It’s all someone else’s fault.

In this case, Mother Nature is the Bad Person who caused all that bad stuff, but let’s punish the people who were dumb enough to live there and not force PG&E to repair their infrastructure. Yeah. That’s the ticket!

And I thought I had seen everything…. I was wrong. There must be more truly stupid stuff to come.

Reply to  Sara
February 13, 2019 7:26 am

The logic of the elite is that only they should be allowed to spend time in the wilderness. The masses need to be locked up in cities so we don’t disturb the leisure time of our masters.

Dave Ward
Reply to  Sara
February 13, 2019 10:29 am

“Mother Nature is the Bad Person who caused all that bad stuff”

Yep, she is responsible for turning CO2 into the vegetation which PG&E’s fallen cables set fire to. The solution is simple – reduce CO2 levels to below 200PPM, everything stops growing, and no more wildfires…

Reply to  Dave Ward
February 13, 2019 11:58 am

Don’t stop there. Reduce it to under 180 ppm, and it will take care of an over-populated Earth, if you believe that is a problem.

Pamela Gray
Reply to  Greg Cavanagh
February 13, 2019 6:00 pm

The tipping point has arrived. It’s all hot air from here and I for one am loving it!

Bob Vislocky
February 12, 2019 6:21 pm

What a great idea and quite the positive feedback loop. Cutting off electricity will lower CO2 emissions via reduced power consumption and it will reduce wildfires further lowering CO2 emissions. The lower CO2 emissions in turn will lead to reduced drought and an even further reduction of wildfires, LOL.

Bryan A
Reply to  Bob Vislocky
February 12, 2019 7:58 pm

PG&E can’t trim or remove any tree that is not in the potential contact zone of their power lines. De-energizing to avoid potential sparking during high wind events is their only option to avoid multi $Billion litigation that fire carries with it. They have no say regarding the dispensation of dead fall trees in forests. All they can have an effect on is that narrow swath of land, within 20′ away from power lines. And they find it difficult to trim those on others private property when property owner cooperation is necessary.

Gerry, England
Reply to  Bryan A
February 13, 2019 6:09 am

Yes, seems like a good business sense response which might expose those who block sensible land management when people complain about blackouts every time it might be windy.

Fred Middleton
Reply to  Bryan A
February 13, 2019 9:00 am

Legal direction/requirement found in California PRC-public resource code 4292 and 4293 and the attachable 4291(basic authority in 1949 little change until 2003) – residential-property improvement buildings, drive the legal framework inside of California electrical distribution-transmission systems. Significant upward regulatory changes post 2003 San Diego fires. REA – Rural Electrical Administration 1935 Executive Order -1936 Legislated law, opened a can of worms in How to pay low kilowatt use by rural home owners. These rural utility users would never pay enough to install, maintain, improve these 1930’s mandated extensions.

When I lived inside of the California wildland fire zone, rural residential on minimum 5 acres up to 12ac in a High Fire Threat Zone, the electrical distribution system had several ‘protective’ mechanical-management in place. All from the Recourse Code . Power Line clearance requirement is one. Not from my input, but some neighbors and generally others living in the ‘threat’ fire zone around the State CA. chose to minimize clearance appearance in electrical lines.

Most trees that were subject to pruning-clearance would be done at a minimum – requiring repetitive ‘Tree trimmers’ to show up every 3-4 years adjacent to my property. On my property I requested the Tree Cutters to clear maximum distance, including removal. No can do, easily.

CPUC in part regulate the PG&E budget concerning the ‘budget proposal’ each year. Including Tree trimming. If on a particular year budget, CPUC/PUC determine that the Utility only needs 85% of the proposal (utility user rates are established via this mechanism) the dreaded maintenance costs go into the ‘deferred maintenance’ syndrome. This is a sign of perpetual catch-up never catching up.

Opinion – In part, the Utility is subject to the Willy-Nilly approach of special Interest Green Environmental No more man syndrome.

Reply to  Bryan A
February 13, 2019 11:53 am

“PG&E can’t trim or remove any tree that …” ‘Can’t’ or ‘are not permitted to’

Maybe whoever wrote the regulations preventing them from removing trees etc. should be the one facing lawsuits.

Reply to  Bob Vislocky
February 13, 2019 12:16 pm

They have it ass backwards. The more CO2 the less fires. O2 is taken out of atmosphere by combining with C. We have CO2 fire extinguishers.

4 Eyes
February 12, 2019 6:23 pm

Just as the greenies want. Shut down modern humanity.

Curious George
Reply to  4 Eyes
February 13, 2019 8:29 am

Switch to a candlelight. It is much more fire-safe (especially in an ammunition depot), uses no fossil fuels. True, it produces much more CO2, bit this CO2 is renewable.

Grumpy Bill
Reply to  Curious George
February 14, 2019 6:14 pm

Aren’t candles made from paraffin, which is derived from petroleum, is therefore a fossil fuel?

February 12, 2019 6:23 pm

It’s California’s answer to everything. When something breaks, break something else so they won’t know who broke what. They’re like the child hiding under a blanket hoping you can’t see him.

Gary Wescom
Reply to  marlene
February 12, 2019 7:54 pm

I’m not sure what else we should expect. Remember these shutoff rules are from the same CPUC that hired Enron to advise them during the 2000 ‘deregulation’ fiasco.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  Gary Wescom
February 13, 2019 7:26 am

And the same CPUC that mandated a GW of storage against intermittency. Not a GWh!
And also said potential pumped storage at Eagle Crest (abandoned open pit Kaiser Steel iron mines) wasn’t storage.
The stupidity of CPUC is expolred in essay California Dreaming in ebook Blowing Smoke.

nw sage
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 13, 2019 6:53 pm

Rud – do you have a link to that book? I searched and came up with a mystery with the same name. Thanks

February 12, 2019 6:35 pm


Patrick MJD
February 12, 2019 6:48 pm

I guess they can also stop lightening strikes. Yeah, play doG!

Reply to  Patrick MJD
February 13, 2019 2:27 am

Hey , CO2 causes more lightning too. Where have been, living under at a rock? Please try to keep up at the back.

Reply to  Patrick MJD
February 13, 2019 4:51 am

Hey, there are other emissions, too! Nitrogen and – the Horror!! – OZONE!

They’re all about to crumple up and die!!!

February 12, 2019 6:52 pm

This is probably a response to a recent series of wildfires in California, which were not the utility’s fault but at least one of which has been officially blamed on PG&E anyway. As if there were something they could do to avoid having some idiot with a weapon shoot several holes in one of their transformers in the middle of a forest.

Joel O'Bryan
February 12, 2019 6:58 pm

Fred Flinton’s car obviously has 2 big honking pieces of timber as the left and right side body, and two big logs cut to bench seats.
I would guess somewhere in the NGD there are provisions to ban all timber cutting.

Even bicylces require refined metals and rubber tires. Taboo under a GND.

No, AO-C wants us to be like North Korea’s peasants. They walk everywhere, mostly starve , and die early. Of course AO-C sees herself as part of the socialist political elite now, just like Kim’s inner circle in PyongYang, a golden gravy train of great food, entertainment, booze, and good living. Until you fall out of favor with the Little FatBoy and get tossed into the hungry dog pit.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
February 12, 2019 7:12 pm

No Flintstones car for me. But maybe the Mr. FUSION on the car behind it can produce the ‘carbon free’ energy we need. It should be good for at least 1.21 giggawatts.


Reply to  Schitzree
February 13, 2019 4:02 pm

Some one was proposing and working on a plutonium/Stirling engined car – that’s something that would be very cool. I can’t recall who it was, but 100+ year lifespan for the fuel and the range! Oh the range..

February 12, 2019 7:01 pm

Wait. Doesn’t the conditions that can lead to forest fires usually last for days…

Or weeks… or months?

Just how long are they going to leave everyone in the dark? Until it rains?


Rick C PE
Reply to  Schitzree
February 12, 2019 7:11 pm

No, just until the state agrees to protect them from liability law suits.

Joel O’Bryan
Reply to  Rick C PE
February 12, 2019 7:27 pm

The tort bar lobby in Sacramento literally owns a lot of Cal Assembly men/women. California is a tort lawyer’s dream state. And many tort lawyers do a revolving door stint in Sacramento as a legislator before going back to a partner position in a big law firm as their reward for ensuring the tort gravy train isn’t hindered.

Killing tort reform in Cal is a basic Democratic Party platform.

Go Home
February 12, 2019 7:04 pm

Wonder what the criteria is for shutting off power. Can those conditions last for days, weeks, months? Is the length of a shutdown not scary enough

Would sure stink to have a Tesla and no way to get power for your vehicle. Maybe they can all invest in electric generators so they can charge up their vehicles?

Go Home
February 12, 2019 7:17 pm

So California is killing the bullet train because of cost overruns and delayed opening. This goes to show that the Governments now days are completely unable to tackle large projects. The cannot build a bullet train from San Fran to LA in less than 20 years and the cost estimate now is more than double what it was 10 years ago. Which means in 10 more years when they expect to complete it, it will be 4 x the original cost.

So how does that idiot from New York expect to have the government build bullet trains across the US in 10 years to make planes unncessary? Of course they cannot. The problem is that the news media refuses to call her and the Dem’s on it because they are all in on the scam to fundamentally change America. CNN and the rest of the media are truly the enemy of the people. And if Americans don’t care enough to make them pay for it, we will all end up paying for it by giving up what freedoms we have left.

Ronald Ginzler
February 12, 2019 7:18 pm

Hmm… no power. Guess I’ll light a fire…

February 12, 2019 7:18 pm

The answer is for all Californians to get home gas fired generators and buy their cars and petrol in Nevada.

Reply to  Nicholas William Tesdorf
February 12, 2019 9:53 pm

You are exactly right, this is the obvious answer for anyone who could be affected by this, and this is what they will do. (this is what people who can afford it do in 3rd world countries, after all)

And the net result will be 1,000 times more air pollution from all of those thousands of portable generators then would have happened if they hadn’t tried to be so “environmental”.

william Johnston
Reply to  Nicholas William Tesdorf
February 13, 2019 9:38 am

I am sure there are rules and regulations against having more that 25-30 gallons of petroleum products
stored on private property. Or something equally restrictive.

February 12, 2019 7:19 pm

I think temporary shut down of electricity during high winds is something that is needed at the moment until the power grid can be made secure. Power lines traverse a lot of rough terrain making that task very difficult. Disturbed terrain also promotes more “kindling” fuels like invasive cheatgrass, which will need to be controlled yearly. Private electric connections must also be brought into compliance.

Weather models are fairly accurate within 24 hours at forecasting high winds. The most dangerous winds are predictable in certain types of terrain. The way the system is set up now, if a break. in the current is detected, PGE will send a “spark” to see if it will re-instate the current. After 3 attempts and no current they shut it down and send out a service crew. Some fires are started by that sparking.

There is a definite inconvenience with that proposed solution and a danger for people who rely on medical equipment and don’t have back up power. All things considered, shut off the power for a few hours that a wind storm passes is cheap and can be implemented right away as a stop gap safety measure.

Joel O’Bryan
Reply to  Jim Steele
February 12, 2019 7:31 pm

The wealthy will install fossil fueled home generators. A huge market opportunity to generator installers is on the horizon for NorCal.

Willis, Anthony, a huge business opportunity awaits you to put together a generator install company with licensed plumbers and electricians installing 200 KVA systems in all those rich estates in wine country.

JimH in CA
Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
February 12, 2019 8:41 pm

A lot of us in the rural areas of the NorCal foothills already have generators. Mine is propane powered with enough fuel for 2 months… nat gas here, so when the electricity goes off our well and septic systems go off-line.

I also have a couple of small UPS units to power some lighting , tv and sat. receiver,and my pc, since our power ‘blinks’ a lot and can be off for a few minutes or hours. PG&E does send email when the power is off can’t tell us an estimate when the power will be back unit a crew is on scene, which is usually an hour. The UPS units give me about 20 minute to decide to switch to the generator.

now I read that LA will abandon the nat gas power plants. That will get SoCal used to the power being off for hours or days… wind and solar being so ‘reliable’.[sarc].

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  JimH in CA
February 12, 2019 10:05 pm

The Cal Liberals are creating business opportunities with their disruption of reliable electric. The affluent can afford to buy generator systems. Just don’t try to charge your EV (tesla, BMW, Audi EV) and power your home at the same time.
The rest of the un-washed masses … well, let them eat cake.

Randle Dewees
Reply to  Jim Steele
February 12, 2019 8:30 pm

Jim, I agree with all you said. Not a long term solution but considering what has been happening this policy is worth it if it can prevent another Paradise type disaster.

John Sandhofner
February 12, 2019 7:52 pm

I am a retired PG&E employee and have been told by other PG&E employees much of the problem arises because environmental regulations do not permit proper trimming of the trees. They do not let them trim far enough back to make sure no limbs can reach the electrical lines. Once again wacky environmental concerns get in the way of common sense procedures.

william Johnston
Reply to  John Sandhofner
February 13, 2019 9:42 am

I have a solution. Construct government housing for all the enviro whackos below the Oroville dam. Free housing. And then blow the dam.

February 12, 2019 8:23 pm

I grew up in a country and culture that engineered its future. Our BEAUTIFUL State of CA planned for the future and actually BUILT Public Works. Our roads, reservoirs, sanitation and power supply were all built with excess capacity for a growing population. We were READY for the future. We WERE part of the future.

But somewhere in the Disco-Jimmy Carter-indoor sweater era … that all changed. And instead of forward-looking planning … everything started moving backward. Drive 55. Wear a sweater indoors (turn your thermostat to 65 deg. F). Fight the new dam. Lawsuits to STOP freeway widening. No more power plants. Sue the refinery’s to stop fuel production. “Peak Oil”. And now this cultural degeneration has accelerated. Several generations have been “educated” (propagandized) that America “has 7% of the world’s population but uses 87% of all natural resources”(isn’t capitalism AWESOME😊!) … This misleading factoid was used to SHAME and lay GUILT on the average American living a comfortable life. Suddenly, we not only radically slowed down construction of our public works … but we even started talking about TEARING DOWN Hetch Hetchy Reservoir! (The sole source of water for the city of San Francisco).

So it is not surprising to read PG&E’s “solution to wildfires”. In fact, I am surprised they haven’t proposed ripping out ALL their electrical infrastructure in the Sierra and Oak Woodland hillsides and telling the residents they need to “live off the grid”. Cover their property in solar panels and windmills. I suspect that was actually considered by the politically-eco-correct government and PG&E bureaucrats … but that will be the “next step” … after another years wildfires incinerate 100 or so people.

Should we all conserve? Of course. But should we be moving toward a third world existence out of some FAKE sense of guilt over our beautiful culture and economy? N.O. NO. We need to STOP hating ourselves and our success. Our culture has been SMART, and PRODUCTIVE, and GENEROUS, by helping lift so many people across the planet out of poverty. We should be BUILDING … not tearing ourselves apart. Earlier this month my fancy NEST thermostat beeped and showed me a leaf icon. I’ve had the thermostat for a couple years and it had never done this before. So I clicked on the thermostat and it told me that it had determined a way to manage the setback features that would be more “eco-friendly”. Sure, why not … I clicked “run”. Well just the other day … I am walking through the room and the thermostat flashed 62 deg.F ! WTF!? 62 deg.! No wonder I’ve be3n freezing!! What the Hell!? What are the assholes at Google doing to my personal comfort!? They’re rolling me backward … making me live as though I am OUTSIDE, not INSIDE my home. Backward we go. Steadily toward a more “equal” third world existence.

Reply to  Kenji
February 13, 2019 5:03 am

Kenji, everything you say is the reason I will never move out of the Midwest.

Flight Level
February 12, 2019 8:24 pm

Lightning strikes are also reported wildfire igniters.

The “switch-off” equation just got a bit tougher. Until obviously a judge sends a cease and desist to static electricity. I’m sure the new green deal has provisions for that too.

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  Flight Level
February 12, 2019 10:10 pm

But if it is a lightning started fire, then the Democratic Socialists can blame climate change for causing it.
Man-Made Climate Change is the best get-out-of-jail free card for politicians ever invented.

Flight Level
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
February 12, 2019 11:10 pm

High-Five !

John Pickens
February 12, 2019 8:41 pm

I would be willing to bet a large sum of money that cutting off PG&E power during Santa Ana wind/drought events will cause MORE fires due to residential gasoline generators being fired up.

Rich Davis
Reply to  John Pickens
February 13, 2019 2:28 am

Temporary problem since gasoline is going away.

And the green gulag will also take care of any such climate kulaks.

February 12, 2019 8:58 pm

If Americans wants to build enough wind farms and solar panels to stop interfering with the climate won’t that interfere with the climate ?

Greg Cavanagh
Reply to  zemlik
February 12, 2019 9:13 pm

You’re asking if their ideas will work? Don’t do that, feel the width…

John Robertson
February 12, 2019 9:11 pm

This is brilliant. Truly impressive Public Relations move by PG&E.
If prevention is legally impossible,as in being denied the ability to trim back overgrowth,charge for upgrading transmission lines and forced to degrade the reliability of generation ,by mandates for wind and solar…
Then being held legally liable,because they have money, for the natural consequences of government ignorance..
Turning off the power at the first hint of danger is brilliant,if you really want to get the consumers attention and highlight the insanity of the regulators,to those same consumers,this is the way to go.

Probably some cynic in the engineering section suggested this as a joke,but the management and lawyers need to escape the coming lawsuits,what better way.

Spotlight on the regulators,AKA politicians.
Catch 22,do you want reliable power?Or do you want your “Power over”?

Lee L
Reply to  John Robertson
February 12, 2019 10:53 pm

Yes John. Turning off the power is exactly what is required. No more lattes, can’t charge your phone, no more jobs for the duration.

This is exactly what the premier of the province of Alberta threatened re: Natural gas being piped to the west coast. The green monster has obstructed pipeline construction . If only she had shut the gas off as she threatened, that pipeline would not be in limbo today. Just let the propaganized ecowarriors and their useful idiots taste the reality of not being able to cook their food or keep their houses warm.

But alas, she has not turned off the valves.

E J Zuiderwijk
February 12, 2019 10:02 pm

And in order to have every greenie play it fairly we need to patrol the neighbourhoods and carefully note those green voters who sneakily switch on their generators. Then expose those unbelievers and fine them into poverty. That’s what green policies will do anyway.

Poor Richard, retrocrank
Reply to  E J Zuiderwijk
February 13, 2019 3:38 am

Hey, we’re on the road to this anyway. If the Green New Deal goes through, it won’t be long before questioning the group-think answer to what is causing variations in the climate will become an ACTUAL crime . . . you know, with all the accoutrements, like prison time, seizure of property, etc. This could be seen coming a long way off as soon as someone decided to re-frame the desire for truth about the climate as being a “climate denier,” as if morally equivalent to holocaust denier.

So I would modestly propose that most of the folks here are not climate deniers or climate skeptics, but instead, “climate truthers” . . . ie, folks who want to know what factors are actually driving changes in the climate, whether any modification in behavior would make a difference, and how we might adapt to any upcoming changes in climate.

Just a thought.

Steve Reddish
Reply to  Poor Richard, retrocrank
February 13, 2019 9:07 am

Claiming to be climate truthers won’t stop us being denigrated for these reasons:

1) We didn’t ask to be labeled “Deniers”. What we call ourselves is irrelevant. We do not need any group label, anyway. I prefer to be an individual.

2)Calling ourselves “truthers” encourages green fanatics to call us “Flat Earthers”

3) Calling ourselves “climate” anything plays into the mindset that climate change is a problem needing a solution, and humans both caused it and can stop it.


Non Nomen
February 12, 2019 10:46 pm

What about the electric surplus energy being generated while the power lines are shut-off? Do they have to shut the power plants off as well or can they just run idle? How long does it take until they can resume normal production again? Can the power grid redirect the energy generated for 5 million people to somewhere else? I am afraid that PG&E customers will have to pay for that as well.
Please note: there will be no gas or diesel either. The pumps at the stations need electric energy…
An utter nightmare for 5 million souls.

James Francisco
Reply to  Non Nomen
February 13, 2019 5:45 am

Non. You don’t have to worry about the electric powered gas pumps because they won’t be needed because no vehicles will be moving because when the electric power goes off all the traffic lights quit working. When the traffic lights quit working very quickly there are wrecks in the intersections. After a few wrecks in a few intersections the traffic backs up and blocks all the intersections. Gridlock. I saw this happen many years ago in California during the rolling blackouts. It will be fun to watch from afar.

Non Nomen
Reply to  James Francisco
February 13, 2019 10:47 pm

I agree with you a.f.a. urban areas are concerned. Rural CA won’t be gridlocked that soon.
But there will be no cellphones, no regular phones, no internet, no radio/tv as well. Communication shutdown which results in looting and subsequent shootings and riots. These green maniacs just don’t understand.

william Johnston
Reply to  Non Nomen
February 13, 2019 10:32 am

An utter nightmare. GOOD! Maybe they will wake up and decide they have been screwed all these years and make some big changes.

Andy Jenkinson
February 12, 2019 11:41 pm

You have thousands of immigrants wanting to enter the US. They need jobs, are used to being in the open, willing to go where there is work, generally low paid etc. On the other hand you have the risk of forest fires which cost $millions and cost lives. You cannot stop fires happening but early detection vastly reduces the damage and costs. Set up a network of people to watch out for fires and sound the alarm and pay them a decent wage. You then solve 2 of your biggest problems.

Reply to  Andy Jenkinson
February 13, 2019 5:59 am

You mean HIRE the same illegal immigrants who have actually STARTED many of these fires? No. Just … No. Next, you’ll be suggesting we PAY the illegal drug cartel members living in the hills tending their illegal marijuana plantations to be firespotters. At the prevailing wage of course.

February 13, 2019 1:36 am

This is the sort of result you get with the American obsession with the huge legal “Blame Game” which riddles decision making throughout society.

February 13, 2019 3:55 am

Governments, of all kinds and at all levels, are in the best of circumstances, temporary, corrupt institutions who will inevitably self-destruct due to the inherent moral turpitude, ineptitude and incompetence of those people who seek to occupy positions of power in government. Honesty and integrity in governments will forever be consigned to a minority position.
But then in most cases those who cause and precipitate the various government caused disasters will have moved on to another part of their lives so they will not have to pay directly for their malfeasance.

February 13, 2019 4:40 am

PG&E’s mistake was in filing Chapter 11, they should have gone with Chapter 7 and liquidated the company, like Sears and Toy ‘r’ Us. That would have gotten AOC’s attention, for about 10 nanoseconds……

February 13, 2019 5:12 am

All the info provided about the crazypants stuff in California is very helpful in deciding to stay away from there. Until a whole generation of ecohippies croaks, you’re stuck with those people on a hillside singing about buying the World a Coke and keeping it company.

I do not envy anyone who lives there. Maybe sanity will return some day.

Walter Sobchak
February 13, 2019 6:27 am

I think it is a great idea. Californians should learn what Socialist paradise is really like.

“Example is the school of mankind, and they will learn at no other.”
Edmund Burke, Letter i. On a Regicide Peace. Vol. v. p. 331.

D Anderson
February 13, 2019 7:29 am

What does a warmist call turning off the power to millions?

A start.

Reply to  D Anderson
February 13, 2019 8:31 am

According to many advocates, activists, “good” people, and their representatives: “progress” (i.e. monotonic change).

February 13, 2019 8:29 am

Turn off the lights. Let them tilt at windmills. Isolate the risk with local energy converters/producers.

Mark Lee
February 13, 2019 8:49 am

Socialism eventually fails when it runs out of other people’s money to steal. Those with money will continue to leave California. Without the ability to devalue currency and inflate their way out of debt, the state will eventually declare bankruptcy. Millions will suffer, most of them the will be the ones who voted the idiots into office and support their programs. So I for one won’t shed many tears. California will become America’s Venezuela. The challenge will be preventing those who flee from trying to do the same thing in the other states. And it WILL BE a challenge. What is the Socialist mantra when Socialism (and lunacy) fails? “True Socialism/Communism has never been tried.”
It will probably take two generations, but eventually California will experience a more conservative revival.

Reply to  Mark Lee
February 14, 2019 2:06 pm

Many have fled to other states and Californication is already a thing in the Northwest US, Nevada and Arizona. Those California pensions allow for a good lifestyle and plenty of leisure time to work on all the problems in their adopted states.

Steve Reddish
February 13, 2019 9:24 am

One threat to the rest of the states from California attempting to go green is the threat to their farmers. Calif. farms are a major food producer for the rest of us. What will happen to our food supply/costs when Calif. farmers can’t get diesel for their farm equipment?

I hope California’s self destruction will merely result in booming production in other states.


February 13, 2019 10:02 am

No mention of the alternative of burying power lines. Yes it is more expensive per mile, but it is a permanent solution. The biggest difficulty I can think of is that there is a lot of granite, but it should still be looked at as a permanent alternative. No more trimming, minimal fire risk due to high winds, etc. Granite is your biggest obstacle.

John Adams
Reply to  Phil
February 13, 2019 1:41 pm

There is no permanent solution. Underground lines degrade and require maintenance also.

February 13, 2019 12:13 pm

This is classic “Atlas Shrugged” stuff! I would love to read a re-written version of Atlas Shrugged where CO2 and Climate Change was the focal point rather than steel production. I guess steel production could still be a component as it does produce CO2. It would make a great read, and probably predict the near future very well.

February 13, 2019 2:49 pm

Yabba dabba doo!

Pamela Gray
February 13, 2019 6:12 pm

Having been raised on a ranch back when telephones could be used as a scull cracking weapon, we took precautions when extreme bad weather surrounded us. That the current spoiled generation believes themselves to be invincible to bad weather is a life lesson waiting its turn to be learned. Those that didn’t learn about these precautions back in the day tended to lose their ranches.

February 14, 2019 2:18 am

Bet some people will eventually chalk this up to climate change (i.e. Christian conservative capitalist white males) and leverage whenever this happens as a way to ‘sway’ people to ‘fix’ the weather with a carbon tax that get’s rich people off the hook for funding social programs.

Pamela Gray
February 14, 2019 6:03 am

Since green dream folks refuse to match what they do with what they say, a little imposed austerity may be just what is needed to stop this silliness and get back to what they are paid to do: Entertain. Besides, of the two areas they think they have something worthwhile to contribute, only one is worth any kind of Grammy, Tony, or Dizzy June award. The other is poorly acted and not worth a Twitter.

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