The Middletown Press (Middletown, CT)

Do or die time

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You probably at least partially payed attention to what happened in Texas, maybe even hoped and prayed actively for our fellow citizens. Luckily, we can do more than pray. The facts from there are freely available: most of Texas has a self-regulated electric grid, completely separate from that of the rest of the U.S. I’m using the word regulated lightly; it turns out that it’s essentiall­y not regulated. Most of the towers in Texas’ grid didn’t have any additional reinforcem­ent or insulation to prepare for the conditions they experience­d, in spite of unilateral agreement among scientists that such a disaster was long overdue.

When I say unilateral, I mean it: scientists — the diagnostic­s team for what nature does — have predicted every disaster our country has recently experience­d with laser precision. The fires caused by drought in California, the deep freeze in the Midwest caused by atmospheri­c instabilit­y at the North Pole, a pandemic caused by careless intrusion into nature’s outskirts: you name it. The worst part is, we know that what happened in Texas is predicted to just be the beginning. We’re finally beginning to see ecological disasters as not just anomalies, and we know that the big one is coming.

Texas was minutes away from infrastruc­tural damage that would have caused an internal refugee crisis within the U.S., knocking out the grid for months. If such a thing happened on a national level — and it could, because our infrastruc­ture is weak and we prioritize money over safety — we would be screwed, put plainly. Now is the time to put our nation to work on strengthen­ing our infrastruc­ture and unchaining ourselves from fossil fuels, the curse that is motivating many of these disasters in the first place.

The facts are simple: it’s do or die.

Filip Dul Bethany

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