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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Listen to scholars, not politicians, on climate change

Listen to scholars, not pols, on climate change

To the Editor:

What a study in opposites we have this week!

The National Transportation Safety Board’s environmental impact statement acknowledges climate change, citing a 7-degree Fahrenheit rise in average global temps by 2100. What’s even more remarkable is the conclusion: controlling emissions in autos is too faint a tactic to stop climate change, so let's not or just never mind.

On the other hand, as cited in the Oct. 9 Northwest Herald, we have the Nobel Prize in economics being shared by William Nordhaus of Yale University and Paul Romer of New York University. Nordhaus’s modeling of the economic effects of climate change strongly argues for a carbon tax, so that carbon pollution is at least paid for and we're incentivized toward non-fossil energy sources.

Romer argues that he’s optimistic that innovation will help society resolve climate change.

Studies, by Nordhaus and others like the Citizens Climate Lobby, argue that pricing carbon will lead us quickly to develop alternative energy. Solar and wind generation are already fast-rising sectors of the economy. Fossil energy, particularly coal, is already being priced out of the market.

New studies by the United Nations also cited in this paper this week that just an additional 1.8-degree Fahrenheit (1.5-degree Celsius) rise in average global temperatures will be catastrophic for tens of millions, brining more unbearable heat waves, coastal flooding and increasingly violent weather.

Only to fossil fools like our current federal administration is this not worth addressing in every way we can.

Jack D Shipley


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