Author: Steve Robinson, CPrep President
We know that the earth is warming. This is causing many problems here in America, with excessive heat, superstorms, and the like. Low-lying and tropical regions worldwide are at a greater risk of flooding and historic heat waves.
We also know that the Pacific Northwest is susceptible to monster earthquake and tsunami events that have occurred at random intervals for as far back as geological evidence is available. The vast majority of Oregon's liquid fuel reserves are stored at a giant facility in Portland, consisting of fuel tanks - some a century old - built on liquifiable soil along the Willamette River. When the Cascadia earthquake hits, this entire facility is at risk of total destruction and causing an environmental catastrophe that could exacerbate the physical damage to the built environment. It will be many months before FEMA is able to supply liquid fuel to meet the needs of the 10 million people living in the earthquake-prone zone.
One approach that deals with both problems is to move as quickly as possible away from fossil fuel as an energy source and toward solar, biomass, and wind. Reducing carbon emissions will help mitigate climate change and reducing our reliance on fossil fuel will increase our earthquake resilience by allowing for energy to be generated locally, rather than our community depending on earthquake-vulnerable fuel pipelines.