Speak up about climate change

To the editor

“It is not clear that intelligence has any long-term survival value.”

This pronouncement was stated by Stephen Hawking, regarded as one of the most brilliant theoretical physicists since Einstein.

I’m starting to believe it.

It seems that both US and Canada are wallowing helplessly in the face of the challenge of climate change. Admittedly this kind of insidious change can be overwhelming.

Consequently, it’s no surprise that folks either do nothing or gravitate towards the distortion spread by right-wing think tanks and fossil fuel industries. Many folks don’t want to believe in the science that overwhelmingly shows that human behavior is the primary cause of our current climate change.

I’m not sure it’s good news that the US is projected to be one of the world’s top oil producers. Extraction, whether it’s oil or minerals, is always a boom and bust.

I am for a strong economy but I fear that news of more oil and a growing population in the US will only increase our fossil fuel consumption. In essence, with oil up, climate change discussion is down.

I’m tired of hearing, “It can’t be done.”  Much of Europe has already proven that changing to solar, wind, biomass and hydropower can create more jobs without sacrificing their high quality of life.

Humans are not great at long-term thinking. After all where is the satisfaction of waiting years for a desirable outcome? Long term thinking among politicians and decision makers takes a boldness and courage that few folks care to test.

So melt away any timidity you might have in speaking out on the issue. Don’t whisper timidly about climate change with family, friends and most importantly with your legislators.

Don’t be satisfied with short-term solutions; your children’s and grandchildren’s health and well-being absolutely requires long-term thinking and actions now.

Tom Anderson

North Branch


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