Ignore climate change at your peril

Ignore climate change at your peril

In a country where vital decisions in congress are too often based on the supernatural, observable evidence from credible sources is being repeatedly ignored in favor of irrational logic and wishful thinking. It is an incontrovertible fact––questioned only by deliberate ignorance––the vast majority of climate scientists worldwide conclude that the earth’s climate is changing too rapidly to be attributed normal conditions and that human overuse of fossil fuels is the main reason. The latest State of the Climate report, written by 240 leading climate scientists, business leaders and experts and directed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, notes 2012 among the hottest years in recorded history. Driven by human activity, climate change is fluctuating faster than predicted and already poses an immediate threat to national infrastructure, water supplies, crops, and shorelines. The urgency of man-made climate surge––recognized under Reagan but put on the back burner under Bush––refers to the ever increasing size and impact of droughts, floods, wildfires, bizarre weather extremes, and freak devastating storms. Billions of dollars are already being spent in clean up, replacement and repairs. Billions more dollars have been lost due to missed work and profits. Future disasters are expected to be uninsurable and are estimated in the trillions for emergency expenditures. The biggest cost of all, however, will be the price our children will have to pay for this generation’s lack of responsibility. Instead of haggling over national debt we ought to be thinking about how our children will face being taxed for repeated national disasters: State wide forest fires, Sandy-like storms all along the coast, flooding up and down the Mississippi and its tributaries, hurricanes that plough through the Gulf Coast and stretch inland devastating entire populations, droughts that destroy irrigation-dependant croplands the size of California’s San Joaquin Valley. Every month catastrophe occurs and yet fundamentalist religious deniers refuse to consider even discussing the existence of out of control climate change lamenting that man cannot undo what God directs. The deniers will continue to delegitimize science and deny reality until the danger is irreversible, and why not, since they proudly claim that their world is not of this kingdom.

Richard Dorsey, Hacienda Heights, CA

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