by Reb Akiva @ Mystical Paths
Superstorm Sandy aftermath. Flooding. Power outages. After a week, people are running short on food, gas for their cars and (those who invested in advance) generators.
Hundreds of thousands of utility repairs need to be made. Local refineries are offline, no gas output…
- In New Jersey, 80% of gas stations are out of service due to lack of electricity or storm damage. Those that remain are frequently running out of gas. WHY? “New Jersey State law prevents New Jersey gas stations from buying from out of state suppliers.” And since the New Jersey refiners were damaged, the in-state suppliers are unable to produce. Though the State has “waived the law through November 7”, there are no out of state providers who market to New Jersey nor NJ gas stations having any contacts with out of state suppliers. Sorry for the inconvenience. (Protecting those New Jersey refiners is now costing all the citizens of the state more than just higher prices, it’s literally preventing the gas from flowing.)
- Similarly, Federal Fuel Regulations require different fuel mixtures for each state depending on the measured air quality of that state. So if Louisiana has a surplus of fuel, Federal Regulations prevent it from being sent to New York and New Jersey. After all, air quality comes first, hospital emergency generators second. (Not to worry, the Federal Government suspended this rule for 2 weeks – whether the distributors know that or can instantly create a market that was prevented from existing before is another question.)
- Again in New Jersey, major electrical system damage. Towns or parts of towns throughout the state are without electricity, and not just those near the shore. (Example, Lakewood, NJ – a major US religious Jewish enclave, is still 50% without power.) Utilities throughout the country have sent repair trucks to assist in rebuilding the electric grids of New Jersey and New York. Tens of crews from an electric utility in Alabama arrived to help in New Jersey - but were sent away because they’re not unionized (they’re not part of the electrical workers union.) So while you’re sitting in the dark, don’t worry, New Jersey’s electric workers are keeping their jobs safe.
- In the Staten Island part of New York, thousands of families were affected by flooding and are suffering from lack of food and fuel (like elsewhere). But the Mayor and New York administration, who has time to discuss global warming and endorse politicians, didn’t bother to send ANYONE to this part of New York City to help out. No FEMA, no Red Cross, NO ONE until the Borough President got on CNN and called them on it. Politics, check. Checking all damaged areas of your city, nope.
…We don’t expect government to solve all the problems. But in an emergency situation it would be nice if they could at least get out of the way when others are.