Letter to the Editor for Aug. 27, 2014
Global warming is a threat that affects all of us
It is time for us to come together to limit global warming. The whole world is watching, including our younger generations.
This should not be a political issue. People around the globe, regardless of political affiliation, are concerned about man-made climate change. A prime example is the U.N.-sponsored Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), whose international scientists have been assessing the problem and possible solutions since 1988.
The most recent IPCC report concludes that commitments already made as part of existing international agreements can limit global warming, while still damaging, to less than 3 degrees C above pre-industrial levels.
Thus, there is reason to believe that timely and cooperative responses can limit destructive climate change (and can potentially provide millions of jobs in alternative-energy sectors).
We have already made good progress, but our ability to exert more powerful, positive leadership is hampered by those here in the United States who blindly deny the problem and/or reject cooperative solutions, often resorting to willful distortion.
One example of their deception is the Aug. 13 letter to the editor, claiming that President Obama is increasing gas prices in a conspiracy to cut fossil fuel consumption. But, truth be told, gasoline prices follow the law of supply and demand, and are actually lower today than they were under George W. Bush. They nearly tripled to over $4 per gallon under Bush, but then plunged to less than $2 during the onset of the Great Recession. Since Obama took office, gas prices have partially rebounded, but not back to the Bush levels. There is no conspiracy.
Our planet’s future would look brighter were it not for such deceptive confusion, inflamed by anti-social messages of hatred, fear, and falsehoods from right-wing talk radio and Rupert Murdoch’s Fox News Channel. And echoed by the politicians who pander to them as well as to some fabulously wealthy campaign contributors.
Extreme, fact-free obstructionism may continue as a cornerstone of conservative orthodoxy, but, together, we can transcend it.
We’re all in this together. We can heed authoritative sources like the IPCC, and we can, together, develop meaningful, real-world solutions..