We must unite as a community

Posted: Sunday, May 11, 2008

I've seen and heard a lot of anti-Alaska Electric Light & Power Co. comments over the last couple of weeks, and I'm a little disappointed with the string-'em-high attitude coming out of some of the people in this town.

Can you just put the torches down, folks?

We've enjoyed relatively cheap and clean hydropower in Juneau for the last 35 years, courtesy of the federal government.

Yes, there may have been ways to protect the lines better, but a whole lot of screaming and finger-pointing right now is not going to do much good. There is plenty of time for a lessons learned approach that will result in a more secure power supply over the long haul. Right now we should be focusing on conservation, protecting the economically vulnerable (not just those with low incomes - parts of our middle class and business sector need relief as well), and getting the hydro back on line.

I agree with Juneau Mayor Bruce Botelho. Our community will emerge from this crisis stronger than before. I applaud the mayor's efforts, the Juneau Assembly's quick action, and I am thankful for the way the United Way and the Juneau Economic Development Council have stepped up to the plate.

Certainly there is more to be done, and we will learn much along the way. For now, though, why not direct our efforts in ways that bring us together as a community rather than tear us apart?

Aaron Brakel


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