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Letters, June 8

Coronavirus protocol

Just a note to let the Oregon Shakespeare Festival know how incredibly stupid it is to require patrons of the outdoor theater to wear masks after proving they have been vaccinated (for at least 14 days) or have tested negative for the coronavirus in the last six hours(!).

The website says these rules were “required by OSF’s union partners.” Who are those people? Do actors really think they are in jeopardy if patrons sitting yards away do not have masks on? Do stage hands feel they are likely to catch the virus from patrons whom they will never have any contact with?

And do OSF union members think they will keep their jobs if they are playing to only 200 patrons in a 1,200-seat theater? With these requirements, they will soon find out. No one I have talked to is willing to pay a penny for performances on these terms.

Dennis Kendig

Ashland

Flick the switch

Electrifying one’s home is not just flicking a switch. Why electrify in the first place?

If new construction includes fossil fuel systems no one will achieve the climate goal: reduced greenhouse gas emissions. Rocky Mountain Institute conducted a study analyzing new all-electric single-family homes: these homes are less expensive than a similar model that uses gas for utilities. You can read the study results at https://rmi.org/all-electric-new-homes-a-win-for-the-climate-and-the-economy/.

What about the old home? Conversion is not easy. One needs a plan. Concentrate on the low-hanging fruit: use LED lighting, seal/replace windows, seal doors and ductwork, replace old insulation, install a setback thermostat. (Setback-ability to adjust the temperature while sleeping or away from home.) Invest in solar; either roof top or connect with a solar coop. Is it better to replace a functioning gas appliance or wait until it wears out? Depends upon your budget and environmental guilt! For heating/air conditioning purchase a conventional ducted system or mini splits.

Finding the right contractor for this conversion is important. How many contractors are up-to date on this electrical world we are trying to create?

What local and national incentives are available for conversion? Calculate your long-term savings. Flick the switch!

Louise D. Shawkat

Ashland