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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Not too late

November 14, 2013

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To the editor:

Next March, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will release a report on the effects of global warming. Information about the report has already been leaked as reported in the SF Gate (“Report: Warming likely to make bad things worse,” Nov. 5). This report confirms my fears about global warming: food and water shortages will become more commonplace, severe weather events will claim more lives, and the threat of violence and civil war will be more pronounced. The article, however, ends on an optimistic note. We can prevent disasters by reducing our fossil fuel emissions. 

Currently there is legislation that has been introduced in the Senate which places a tax on carbon emissions and returns the proceeds to the public. The Climate Protection Act provides a market-based approach to cutting CO2 and helps consumers to see the true costs of fossil fuels. The report due out next year foretells of devastating future, but with this tax-and-rebate bill before the Senate, I am hopeful.

Comments

Gerald Kerr 4 months, 3 weeks ago

It is too late. Politicians and ideologues have long ago ruined chances of objective discourse. 99% consensus is a sham. No models of co2 forced global warming have been verified- all predictions of disaster have failed. Bureaucrats and opportunistic researchers demand more and more taxes and more funding of jiggered research to further scare the wallets from our pockets.

It is too late. The economy is in shambles. Hard times focus our attention to the astounding absence of unmassaged supporting data. Climate change talks are in disarray. Countries previously supportive of carbon tax credits are bailing out. Albert Gore weeps.

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George Lippencott 5 months ago

Wow, neat idea.

We terminate promised and in some cases prepaid medical care and renege on social security so we can get rid of the seniors and near seniors who caused the problem. Then we use the savings to address Climate issues and the young of today can continue to enjoy their increasingly heavily subsidized lifestyle.

Note: send copy to AARP.

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John Graham 5 months ago

Ken i believe you have misinterpreted my prior statements. I agree with you that both are issues that need addressing but in my opinion people as a whole appear more united against the tractor trailer than they are against the car. If you get hit by the car which is closer to you then you won't be able to get out of the way of the tractor trailer. If we don't seriously address entitlements now then we won't have any money left to address global warming now. I am not denying that either is a real problem I was just relating my personal observation that we as a society want to fix one and ignore the other one that is equally dangerous in some ways and closer to our front door. Getting the tractor trailer under control is great but it won't do nearly as much good if we don't get the car under control too.

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John Graham 5 months ago

People are concerned about global warming despite the fact that most projections of serious consequences to civilization will occur after most if not all current living adults have died due to other causes. Most models I see show the most serious events starting in the last quarter of this century. I understand the whole "we must save the world for our kids, grandkids and grandkids' kids" argument. People are adamant that if we don't do something about global warming in the next few years it could be too late for civilization as we know it.

What I find really interesting is there is not nearly the same level of concern by these same people about doing something serious about controlling entitlement program costs (those costs that are not discretionary in the budget) that are expanding at geometric rates compared to GDP. Medicare and social security are the biggest problems in the entitlement programs and ACA will join them. If something serious is not done in the near future about growth in entitlement program costs, there will be substantial harm caused to the society our kids and grandkids will inherit long before global warming causes serious problems. Where is the countrywide consensus and outrage, like there is for global warming, to do something about entitlement programs including Medicare and social security? I find it funny that the US is more worried about global warming than fixing entitlement programs that will kill off our society first by drowning our kids and grandkids in an ever rising sea of debt. I am NOT saying entitlement programs should be eliminated, but they must be modified somehow to control their explosive growth.

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Les Blevins 5 months ago

My firm has developed advanced thermal conversion (ACT) technology that is well positioned to solve a host of problems. Various ATC technologies have been proposed as part of the solution to meeting waste management, greenhouse gas reductions and renewable energy targets. There is a clear distinction between ATC and incineration, though some pressure groups argue that all thermal treatment technologies differ only slightly and are fundamentally unsustainable (a rare case of environmental pressure groups putting out disinformation that shows unquestioning acceptance of an ill-advised EU Directive). Like many of our society's contentious issues, there is a polarity of views and the need for common ground from which to build a sustainable future. Unfortunately I don't seem to get any consideration from the City of Lawrence on my well researched positions which essentially leaves the world totally at risk of ever more damaging weather events like we've seen lately in the Philippines.

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George Lippencott 5 months ago

Another big lie like “if you like your health care policy…”. This program is not revenue neutral as it punitively transfers money from carbon heavy users to others (under the best of circumstance if Congress does not rip off some of the revenue). It is not market based as the heaviest contributors to our carbon problems are our utilities which are almost all government controlled. Most importantly it does nothing to reduce carbon generation. Individual rate payers would still have to pay to fix the problem - after paying the tax that goes to others.

A little honestly would go a long way but apparently it is more important that we punish the carbon transgressors than we tell the truth. There are other solutions to this very real problem that ask all of us to progressively address a national problem.

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Les Blevins 5 months ago

Richard I said "I'm in total agreement" with you but I do have an issue with your position on "Errands and in town driving are the most effective sources for fossil fuel pollution." I actually can't agree with that part of your position. I think it is well proven that coal burning power plants are the big atmospheric polluters and consequently the low hanging fruit we must pick off the pollution tree first before turning the corner on errand running.

I believe humanity needs to repower human activities with cleaner energy on a grand scale, and that innovation is key to a better future and I aspire to offer homeowners, businesses, towns, cities, counties and utilities a novel new concept low-budget, low-carbon pathway to greater energy efficiency, energy security, cleaner energy and economic development and now that President Obama's moving the climate issue to the front burner I'm confident this will be a big boost to what my company is doing.

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Les Blevins 5 months ago

I'm in total agreement with Mr. Heckler and the scientists and the very obvious. Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Katrina, huge and numerous wildfires, long extended droughts, numerous floods, and now Super Typhoon Hayian in the Philippines, etc, etc. It isn't a scam designed to shift wealth from nations that have it to nations that don't it's a scam perpetrated by the Koch firm and their cohorts in the fossil fuel industry that spoil the seas and the land and the air and if there are still those who can't get their minds around it they should recall the disinformation the tobacco firms put out for decades.

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Bob Smith 5 months ago

Maunder Minimum, anyone?

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Scott Burkhart 5 months ago

And another thing........this latest report from the IPCC is a delayed report because it was supposed to already be released. The problem was the newest data on the ice accumulation at the poles and Greenland flew in the face of the report that was to come out. They had to go back and rewrite it to factor in the complete contradiction to findings. Statements like, "Well, because of warmer temperatures there has been a higher moisture in the atmosphere therefore causing a greater accumulation of snowfall and increasing the polar ice caps." Really? Are you people serious? Here's another whopper, "If you like your insurance, you can keep it. If you like your doctor you can keep them. Period!"

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Scott Burkhart 5 months ago

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! Back in the 70's we were headed for an ice age. In the 80's we would destroy the Earth as we know it within 20 years because of green house gasses. It is all garbage. The whole "global warming" scam is designed to shift wealth from nations that have it to nations that don't. That's it. It is a giant income redistribution scheme. With the ice cap over the Antarctic that has increased by 2 million square miles over the last year and the North Passage across the North Pole completely closed through the summer, where 20 vessels are now trapped, it completely debunks all of the "models" projected from the Henny Pennys of the world.

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Bob Smith 5 months ago

There's no paper over here. Could somebody pass me a carbon credit?

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Richard Heckler 5 months ago

WE humans should undertake this matter of Climate Change into our own hands instead we wait for a carbon tax to make us change our ways.

Or we wait for MORE catastrophic weather that kills our friends and family to wake us up.

Or we wait for wayyy more expensive gasoline which has been draining our wallets for years.

Or we wait for food prices to go beyond reality due to climate change.

Why do we humans resist parking the gas guzzlers instead of going for the leaner burning vehicles?

Perhaps not everyone but a large number of us could take up walking to work, bicycling to work or grabbing public transportation.

Errands and in town driving are the most effective sources for fossil fuel pollution so I guess we humans need to get smarter about how we humans go about running our errands.

If we wait for congress to legislate better decisions we will never stop polluting in such large ways.

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