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Opinion

Opinion

Letter: Get serious

December 8, 2012

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To the editor:

It’s time America got serious about environmental issues. When researchers informed us several years ago that global warming was a real threat and that extreme weather conditions would accompany climate change, many U.S. legislators ignored these warnings. They labeled these comments as outrageous rhetoric by a bunch of fear-mongering scientists who were attempting to gain funding for worthless research.

Now that America is experiencing the very types of weather patterns researchers predicted, you would assume this would temper voices of ignorance. However, instead of yielding to reality and admitting we have a major crisis on our hands we concede only half way. We acknowledge that climate change is occurring but that our contribution is insignificant. Or, even worse, we understand that we have a major part to play in this cataclysmic disaster but we lack the initiative to push for real change.

As long as America continues to withhold support for lower carbon emission standards, prevent legislation that would support funding for renewable energy, allow big oil to rule over our best interest and elect legislators who could not pass a high school chemistry course, then what chance do we have?

Comments

FalseFlag 1 year, 10 months ago

...again....another flag for people to occupy their meager existence.

You been to China lately Nick? Do you know why many there wear surgical masks when outside?

Try to get your flag memes organized before knee jerking.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 1 year, 10 months ago

Talk about knee-jerking. The letter writer makes very valid points, and all you can do is complain that he doesn't write a letter about the price of tea in China?

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 1 year, 10 months ago

But even our pollution controls are very inadequate, especially on coal-powered plants. The pollution emitted by these plants is still a very major public health problem.

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CHEEZIT 1 year, 10 months ago

Just curious. What is the explanation for the weather during the Dust Bowl Days?

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Fred Mertz 1 year, 10 months ago

Good question and I'd like to know how the ice age ended.

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Cait McKnelly 1 year, 10 months ago

You have Google. Use it. I will tell you this; the effects of it were man made.

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Fred Mertz 1 year, 10 months ago

@cait48 Really? I didn't know the the ice age was man made. Who'da thunk it?

The dust that filled the skies during the dust bowl was due to the farming practices, but it was a changing climate that led to the land being developed for agriculture and then the erosion.

There were periods of high precipitation that led to more farming and then the drought that led to the dust bowl. So, was man responsible for the changing climate extremes - wet and dry?

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Trumbull 1 year, 10 months ago

Farming practices lead to soil erosion and the dust. This was on man. The lack of precipitation was not man's fault. The stripping of the native grass and it's deep root structure enable the wind and drought to carry away much of the top soil.

Fortunately, improvements were made (by man) that saved the area from desertification. Things like crop rotation and planting hedgerows saved the top soil. This is a good example of a succesful conservation effort by man. During that time, many resisted these efforts because they did not like the government telling them what to do.

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Ken Lassman 1 year, 10 months ago

Well, almost. Hedgerows weren't really a big part of the equation--they were barbed wire and metal fence post substitutes for eastern Kansas, and have become rarer and rarer over time as farmers want bigger and bigger fields. No till agriculture, however has been a major player, leaving last year's dead stubble on the ground and planting into it instead of burning off the stubble and plowing in the fall, has made a really big difference.

And fred, yes, when the global temps go up, the air holds more water vapor. This leads to an increase in BOTH droughts AND flooding. Go figure.

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 10 months ago

Union of Concerned Scientists

Scientific Integrity: Let Science Do Its Job

Our civilization is built on a foundation of science. Life as we know it is the result of a remarkable series of technological advances over the past few centuries—advances largely driven by partnerships between science and government.

But science can only thrive when it’s independent. When commercial or ideological interests pressure scientists to distort or suppress their findings, science is weakened, and we all lose.

Our scientific integrity work began in 2004 in response to a growing problem of political interference in government science. Our advocacy on this issue helped win a promise from the incoming Obama administration to pursue scientific integrity reform.

Now, science-based safeguards that have long protected us are under attack in Congress. And the powerful interests that stand to gain by weakening these protections are doing their best to discredit the science that supports them.

UCS is fighting back—helping scientists respond to political attacks, working to preserve science-based safeguards, and keeping the pressure on for federal scientific integrity reform.

Corporate Interference in Science Our report, "Heads They Win, Tails We Lose," shows how corporations corrupt science at the public's expense.
More about corporate interference in science

http://www.ucsusa.org/scientific_integrity/

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 10 months ago

Union of Concerned Scientists

Global Warming

The Earth is warming and human activity is the primary cause. Climate disruptions put our food and water supply at risk, endanger our health, jeopardize our national security, and threaten other basic human needs. Some impacts—such as record high temperatures, melting glaciers, and severe flooding and droughts—are already becoming increasingly common across the country and around the world. So far, our national leaders are failing to act quickly to reduce heat-trapping emissions.

However, there is much we can do to protect the health and economic well-being of current and future generations from the consequences of the heat-trapping emissions caused when we burn coal, oil, and gas to generate electricity, drive our cars, and fuel our businesses.

Our country is at a crossroads: the United States can act responsibly and seize the opportunity to lead by developing new, innovative solutions, as well as immediately putting to use the many practical solutions we have at our disposal today; or we can choose to do nothing and deal with severe consequences later. At UCS we believe the choice is clear. It is time to push forward toward a brighter, cleaner future.

Fox News Channel and Wall Street Journal Opinion Pages Overwhelmingly Mislead on Climate Science.

Visit our new Climate Hot Map to learn about the effects of global warming Campaign.

What is Global Warming? When CO2 and other heat-trapping emissions are released into the air, they act like a blanket, holding heat in our atmosphere and warming the planet. Overloading our atmosphere with carbon has far-reaching effects for people everywhere. Learn more.

Global Warming Science & Impacts.

http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/

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Centerville 1 year, 10 months ago

So, where's the 'research' that shows that wasting money = nicer weather?

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Ken Lassman 1 year, 10 months ago

Doesn't sound wasted to me, then.

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Charles L Bloss Jr 1 year, 10 months ago

Not much. They need to get their head out of where it is and wake up to reality before it is too late for all of us!!

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kernal 1 year, 10 months ago

Yes, FalseFlag, China is a major contributor to the problem, but so are we as is Russia, with India trying to catch up with us. This will take a global effort and like it or not, we're all on the same planet and have the same level of responsibility for what's taking place.

In the past we have set the standard, but now it seems Europe is doing more than we are. Time for the Americas, China, Russia and India to face this because as environmental damage worsens, economic havoc will be close behind.

Even the 1% won't be protected from it.

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