Pretending Global Warming is Undecided is Irresponsible

Originally posted 2/7/07; reposted 2/18/07

I did my morning round of newspapers online this morning and discovered a new online poll on my local paper’s website. I found myself feeling quite aggravated and composed and submitted the following letter to the editor of the Wheeling News-Register/Intelligencer.

The tone of this newspaper’s coverage of the very real threat posed by global warming–including the recent poll asking if this cold snap changes people’s opinion about climate change–is irresponsible. Scientists from around the world have determined that the documented increase in Earth’s temperatures is 90% likely caused by the actions of human beings. A cold snap doesn’t change the reality of global warming or the impact climate change is having and will have.

What we need from our leaders is a cohesive and comprehensive plan to address our reliance on a lifestyle that continues to damage our planet. This plan must include not only long term methods of responding (e.g.; implementation of clean mass transit or concrete ways to help people switch to renewable energies to heat and cool our homes) but specific strategies that everyone can participate in immediately (e.g.; adjust our thermostats, stop using disposable products).

This newspaper can immediately talk to experts and publish in a practical, readable format ways in which each one of us can lessen our “carbon footprint”. This newspaper can investigate and report—not simply repeat the self-serving answers of politicians and executives–what the impact of any proposed action will be on the climate of our world.

In short, this newspaper has the ability to responsibly inform and educate and improve the life of our community and the world. Or, you can simply focus on making a buck.

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