Governor Cox’s speech was hopeful and mostly positive. I’m glad he spoke out against conspiracy theories and pointed out the danger of focusing on Fox news for information. I wish he had omitted the beards against Washington. Many of the things he blamed are due to people’s resistance to following science. I also wish his idealistic comments were actually true. An example is his reference to the “Utah Way”. We don’t work together and reach across the aisle in Utah. The legislature is so strongly Republican that it is able to ignore and override Democratic proposals.

I loved the focus on saving the Great Salt Lake, but until our leaders realize the connection between fossil fuel use and climate change, I fear little improvement will be made. Utah loves its fossil fuels and currently subsidizes industry and promotes extraction. He is looking forward to a possible extension of the Uinta Basin Rail to allow for more oil development. He is suing the Biden administration over Bears Ears, in part to access the fossil fuel potential there. It supports the Lake Powell Pipeline even when Lake Powell’s capacity has declined over the past twenty years and is at an all time low. All of this is affected by climate change.

Governor Cox can do a lot, but he needs the support of the Legislature. I hope our leaders realize there is an economic benefit to Utah becoming the leader in renewable energy, a team player in establishing water rights, and a student of science. in passing laws. We could have a Utah Way worth following and a state whose policies and practices are as remarkable as its geography.

Patty Becnell



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