PG&E Helps Build a Dry-Run Burning Man Temple

Synergy between two for-profit entities with extensive experience with humongous fires.

This year, the Man pairs up with “The Man,” as in one of the worst corporate citizens in California. (Jennifer Morrow)

In a dry run before the actual Temple goes up on the playa next month, noted shitty corporate citizen Pacific Gas & Electric will build a test version on Friday along with 100 volunteers. According to a media advisory from PG&E corporate relations, the company donated more than 100 logs to Burning Man, sourcing them from “drought-stricken, pest-impacted dead trees” in Tuolumne County. Having since becoming usable lumber at a sawmill in Richmond, the wood will be #blessed at an Oakland warehouse tomorrow.

The annual celebration of hedonism and conspicuous consumption masquerading as spirituality concludes with a large conflagration, something PG&E’s resume lists relevant experience with after a September 2010 blast in San Bruno killed eight people and destroyed 38 homes. (Prosecutors in that case initially sought a criminal penalty in excess of $1 billion, but ultimately, the company paid out $3 million in damages, $500,000 for each of the six counts for which it was convicted.)

Since we live in a society where corporations are people, let’s just say that we’re pretty iffy on going to a party where PG&E is a co-host. Inquiries as to whether the Burn’s sushi platters will be catered by Safeway were not returned as of this writing, but we’re fairly certain the C-level Google execs who plan to attend have sent their assistants to Betabrand.

View Comments