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To the editor:

Do the few but vocal activists lining shorelines, marching the steps of the statehouse and dangerously tree-sitting along proposed pipeline routes understand how important energy is to their daily lives and headline-making, anti-fossil fuel antics?

Besides the irony — activists used gas-fueled cars to drive to the protests, held signs and wore lightweight clothes and shoes made with petroleum-based products and took photos with smartphones manufactured in oil- and natural gas-powered factories — it’s clear protesters do not understand the necessities they would lose if every project they protested were blocked.

Also ignored is how wind and solar energy generation have a secret friend — natural gas, which commonly helps manufacture the steel and metals used in the construction of windmills and solar panels and which quietly serves as a backup resource for generating electricity.

Renewable energy and cleaner-burning fossil fuels are sidekicks, helping cut emissions, ensure cleaner water and provide affordable energy, a must for those on a fixed income and the 11 percent of Virginians in poverty, all of whom see a dangerously high, double-digit percentage of their take-home pay go toward unnecessarily high electric and gasoline bills.

Being anti-offshore energy or anti-pipeline — pipelines, remember, are the safest way to move energy — also means being anti-renewable energy and anti-environment.

Claiming we can run the state without all forms of energy isn’t helpful or constructive and shows a lack of understanding by activists on how energy really works and the families they hurt.

Tim Page

Southeast Director

Consumer Energy Alliance

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