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CLIMATE: Pragmatism needed on many fronts

Letter by Grace D. Cumming, Tacoma on Nov. 22, 2013 at 11:57 am with No Comments »
November 22, 2013 1:42 pm

The News Tribune has provided a variety of informative articles and opinions about global warming or climate change.

In “Clamor over climate crisis inequalities is growing” (TNT, 11-17), The New York Times relates how countries that have not emitted much carbon are angry about the damages to their nations by stronger storms and rising sea levels. On the same day appeared The Associated Press investigation, “Secret cost of ‘green’ power,” which exposed the folly of ethanol as a viable way to reduce greenhouse gases, and a Washington Post opinion piece, “Megastorms could create tipping point for climate action.”

The fourth story reveals the failure to take global warming seriously: “Bad storms mean more Stadium Way work” (TNT, 11-19).

A $10 million project now requires $2 million more. Calculations for the project were based on historical norms, not the clearly stated impacts of global warming: heavier precipitation due to more water vapor in the warmer atmosphere.

An opinion piece, “Pragmatism needed on global warming” (Robert J. Samuelson column, 11-20) calls for a carbon tax that will not only discourage fossil fuel use but also provide funds to reduce the budget deficit.

The need for pragmatism goes beyond a carbon tax, however. Workable solutions are required in building alternative energy sources to reduce carbon emissions and also in our infrastructure planning to adapt to the expected impacts of the dangerous CO2 overload.

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