Before a boxing match, the two fighters are weighed in to make sure the event is fair and safe for both parties. If only our fight with the EPA was this way.

Keep in mind that Interior Alaska is one of the coldest places on earth in the winter. 

Extreme temperatures are not always a bad thing if you enjoy crystalized trees and skiing on top of once flowing rivers. It also slows down the riff raff at times. 

But in order to exist here, we must take necessary precautions. Some of these survival measures have been successfully used for many generations.

Coal and wood are our best friends. There’s nothing like a negative-45-degree night with northern lights and a hot wood stove. 

Many of us also enjoy fresh eggs from our homegrown birds who eat a food source that we choose to feed them. Our tough and hardy chickens and ducks need a little heat, too, along with an insulated home and a thick layer of hay or straw. 

Traditional incandescent lightbulbs are the perfect solution as they provide the light needed to trigger the birds’ laying hormones, while also releasing heat to keep them warm on those cold winter nights. 

This lovely system came under attack a few years ago, thanks to a local mayor and noisy group of environmentalists who alerted the federal Environmental Protection Agency about our way of life. Since then, it’s been an uphill battle in the Fairbanks area.

A while back, I went to get some split wood at Northland Lumber in Fairbanks, only to find out that they weren’t “allowed” to sell split wood anymore unless they met some special qualification and dried it in a certain way. This was just the beginning of the EPA’s meddling.

Apparently interior residents are too ignorant to dry their own wood (according to the EPA). Somehow this unelected branch has taken the authority to dictate and threaten business owners when it comes to selling wood to local residents. 

I notified several government people about the situation and was quickly educated about the ongoing war against wood stove owners in Fairbanks. I was not aware of the extent to which Fairbanks residents have been harassed about burning wood in their own homes. The borough has offered deals about voluntarily switching out wood stoves, but it’s different when unelected federal bureaucrats begin micromanaging how private homeowners produce basic heat.

I figured I could get around all of this by finding wood from other places. Well, now EPA has hit my life too. I recently stopped by Ace Hardware in Fairbanks to get my GE incandescent bulbs for winter to keep my birds warm, only to discover the business they had to literally throw them away because of Biden’s new anti-incandescent light bulb policy. That’s right, as of Aug. 1, the president has forced companies all over the United States to destroy perfectly good lightbulbs! Thanks to the radical green movement, they will only permit us to use LED bulbs, which do not produce much heat.

Golden Valley Electric Association aims to cut ties with Healy 2, Alaska’s largest clean coal fired power plant.

If I owned Lowes or Ace Hardware, I would stand against this and fight it. What about GE? I haven’t interviewed them, but they can’t be happy. I wonder if they are pushing back.

Speaking of green movement dictates, I attended part of a meeting about our electric company, Golden Valley Electric Association (GVEA) and the Healy Coal Mine. GVEA is continuing its push to sever connections with the coal mine because of pressure from radical environmentalists. Here we go again. I have driven through Healy about a hundred times, and have never seen anything dirty there from the coal mine. Their river and their lake are beautiful, and the air is crystal clear.

The EPA and climate alarmists are overstepping. They have no business meddling with how interior Alaskans generate basic heat. They shouldn’t be interfering with homeowners, local elected governments or private businesses.

We need to dig in our heels, put on the proverbial boxing gloves and step into the public arena.

The views expressed here are those of the author.

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OPINION: Climate alarmists want total control on how Alaskans keep warm

Pamela Samash
Pamela Samash is a longtime Fairbanks area resident. She currently serves on the Alaska Commission on Aging, and is the president of Right To Life – Interior Alaska.