The investigation is done and state agencies found that the Camp Fire was the fault of Pacific Gas & Electric equipment.
The wildfire that started Nov. 8, scorched more than 153,000 acres, wiped out some 14,000 homes and was directly responsible for 85 deaths. It wiped out the city of Paradise.
We asked: So what now? What do you see in the future for PG&E and for its customers, stockholders, and for taxpayers? Is it time to consider a public rather than a private utility? Where do we go from here?
Here are more responses:
– Jennifer Beevers: I don’t think PG&E is responsible. They are just the scapegoat, so us taxpayers will pay for it. The real people responsible are the environmentalists who won’t allow clean up of our lands. I remember living in Yosemite in the ’70s and every year they would do a control burn. Oh, but wait. Environmentalists came in and said, that’s not natural. They used to take sand from Mirror lake to spread on the roads in the winter. Oh, but wait, environmentalists said that’s not natural. Now Mirror lake is mirror marsh, Yosemite burned up. Oh, but isn’t that natural?
– Jonathan Dohannan: Jennifer Beevers, having worked for the National Park Service and Bureau of Land Management, I can definitively say that they still do control burns in all the parks, national forest’s and any public lands under federal control. As a matter of fact, I know they do much more than that to try and keep our public lands healthy. From invasive species eradication to trash pick up days, so, to blame environmentalists for PG&E’s neglect ... is a bit of a reach.
– Jeffrey Andrus: Yuba County does own some dams. I am not sure if this is the best route to take... I usually hate giving the government more control. However, I think I would trust Yuba County water department more than PG&E at this point. Plus we already pay the highest rates in the country so what do we have to lose?
– Holly Magiera: We should not have monopolies in the energy business. It is not my fault that the fire started but I, like every other customer, will have our already outrageously high bills raised even more. We can barely afford our PG&E bills now. And I don’t understand how a judge recently ruled they could give a ton of money in bonuses to their top people. It’s criminal. And we the people are paying for it.
– Peni Carnegie: With convenience comes risk. It’s really sad what happened but a spark is not only responsible. Quit blaming.
– Margo McLeskey: So what have the government agencies been doing over the past six months to correct the years of neglect of cleaning out the forests to prevent these catastrophic fires? I have not heard of anything. So blame PG&E because surely that will start helping to stop these fires! Just insane!!
– Arnoldo Garcia: PG&E needs to help local communities by hiring local companies to do maintenance on local lines ... pruning, cleaning areas around lines/poles. It would save money and lower costs.
– Rachele McKinney: I’m ready for something different. Every month since the camp fire happened my bill has been $400+ and before that happened we never saw a bill over $200.
– Casey Otero: No denying the initial spark was probably caused by a faulty part, but I can’t, still to this day, understand how they’re at complete fault for Paradise burning down. Started small yet the combo of dry land, poor cleanup of dead brush and trees (logging should never have been halted or limited so severely, thanks Brown) and the wind (act of God, is what they’d call a natural cause) lit it all up so fast. ...
– Karen Wood Fuller: I think we all knew this. Does PG&E even have the ability to cover these costs? Did they have the money to keep lines clear and modernized? We will all pay for it. How do we just leave so many people with so much loss? Terrible situation.
– Will Padget: PG&E needs to be abolished and replaced with smaller entities. They clearly do not have the ability to maintain an operation of their current size. If this were any other type of company they would have been shut down a long time ago. What kind of business is allowed to remain in operation that kills its own customers.
– Robert Walsh: This is a false dichotomy. PG&E may be technically a private company but they are a government-enabled monopoly. They have no competition which leads to all sorts of problems including higher costs, waste, and an inability to hold them accountable for their failures because there is no other alternative. Any cost can easily be passed off onto consumers because there is nothing we can do about it. Then governments try to ‘save’ us with price controls, which causes even more problems. Lets allow for some competition in local energy providers and see where that takes us.
– Martha Reames Witt: Can’t say ... you might print it.