Letters to the Editor

‘Nothing secret about the new dam safety legislation,’ state says

A local temperature sign reads 120-degrees as temperatures climb to near-record highs Tuesday in Phoenix. The National Weather Service forecasts a high of 120 degrees, which is has only hit three times in recorded history in Phoenix, the last time 22 years ago.
A local temperature sign reads 120-degrees as temperatures climb to near-record highs Tuesday in Phoenix. The National Weather Service forecasts a high of 120 degrees, which is has only hit three times in recorded history in Phoenix, the last time 22 years ago. AP

Dam safety

Re “California Legislature votes to keep dam-safety plans secret” (sacbee.com, June 15): There was nothing secret about the new dam safety legislation. Far from slipping the bill into the public domain as suggested, the language was posted on March 8, shared with Republican and Democratic staff in the Senate and the Assembly on March 10, and raised in budget subcommittee hearings on March 16 and 22. The Bee misinterpreted the intent of the legislation. It improves public safety by requiring all dam owners to create emergency action plans. It clarifies which information in those plans should not be disclosed, such as home phone numbers. The article claimed the state would be keeping these plans “secret.” The Department of Water Resources will release these plans for state owned facilities consistent with this legislation and statewide policy, without the sensitive information. It is unfortunate the Bee declined requests from the state to print a correction.

Bill Croyle, Department of Water Resources acting director, Shingle Springs

Heat wave

Re “Canceled flights, burning door handles: Heat hits Southwest” (sacbee.com, June 19): We read that Earth's killer heat worsens. Will we reach some magical temperature increase where we lock in irrevocable negative feedback loops leading to catastrophic climate change consequences? Most climate scientists believe there is a significant risk this will occur. We are past the point of warning about catastrophic climate change consequences or demonizing climate change deniers. In addition to efforts to fight climate change, we need to focus on adapting to its consequences. We need to make a clear eyed assessment of how to protect our coastal and interior communities from flooding. How can agriculture be supported? What steps are necessary to react to future droughts and wildfires? How much will these efforts cost and what must we sacrifice?

Harold Ferber, Elk Grove

Climate changes

There is no denying that our climate is changing. It always has and it always will. Earth has experienced extreme climate changes before the appearance of mankind so it would be important to determine what percentage of the current change is man-made and what percentage is natural. That way we could determine what we are capable of controlling and what is out of our control. With all the attention climate change gets, why are there no American polls that lists climate change as a top 10 concern?

Janis Hightower, Orangevale

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