Inside Opinion

What's on the minds of Tacoma News Tribune editorial writers

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Tag: environment

April
21st

Our green is fading this Earth Day

If Mother Earth were a political candidate, she wouldn’t be happy with her polling numbers.

Just in time for Earth Day, a Harris poll shows that the percentage of Americans concerned about the planet has dropped from 43 percent to 34 percent – in just the past three years. Another survey shows that 49 percent of us think economic growth is more important than environmental protection. Only 41 percent think the opposite.

The Christian Science Monitor editorial board suggests that the slumping economy is a big factor in those attitudes.

According to the Harris poll, American adults are less likely now than three years ago to take the following “green” actions: Read more »

Jan.
28th

Obama ticks off enviros, too

Listening to Wednesday’s State of the Union speech, I wondered how some of President Obama’s references would play with environmentalists – specifically his call for more nuclear power, “clean coal” and offshore oil drilling.

Here’s the reaction from Friends of the Earth President Erich Pica:

Obama Speech a Kick in the Gut to Environmentalists

While we welcome President Obama’s call for comprehensive climate and energy reform – as well as his focus on job-creating high-speed rail and solar power – it was alarming to hear him refer last night to a variety of dirty energy sources, including nuclear, coal, offshore oil drilling and biofuels, as clean.

President Obama’s support for all these dirty energy sources was a big win for corporate polluters and their Washington lobbyists, but it was a kick in the gut to environmentalists across the country. The President was essentially telling these Americans that their voices don’t matter.

It’s a shame that while in so many other areas President Obama is calling for an end to the influence of corporate special interests and lobbyists, when it come Read more »

Jan.
2nd

Our 2010 agenda for community action

This editorial will appear in Sunday’s print edition.

Human needs, education should be top priorties

Yes, The News Tribune’s editorial board does have an agenda. And here it is.

The guiding principles behind our editorials are no secret. We publish them at the beginning of January, each and every year.

This civic agenda is our way of emphasizing priorities we consider essential to the health of the South Sound’s communities.

It evolves each year to reflect changing circumstances, but the underlying principles largely remain the same: educational opportunity, responsive and responsible government, the protection of natural resources, help for the hurting. No region can prosper if such fundamentals are neglected.

The dawn of a new year is a fitting occasion to take stock of the progress made in the last 12 months and set sights for the coming year.

Read more »

Oct.
6th

Russell Investments’ not-so-green commute to Seattle

This from a disappointed member of the keep-Russell-in-Tacoma team. He asked to remain nameless, but his numbers look credible:

See below for ‘irony of the month.’ Russell signs enviro protocol while it decides to throw 700-900 employees into single occupancy vehicles onto I-5 every morning, more than tripling most of their employees’ daily commutes. Can’t have it both ways.

Our analysis, which we shared with Russell, shows that in the aggregate Russell employees will spend an additional 373,880 hours per year in their cars (if the company left Tacoma). This is 474 more hours per commuter per year. Based on IRS mileage reimbursement rates, Russell employees would see an additional cost of commuting of $4.5 million per year. We used actual Russell employee zip codes so this takes into account the few people whose commutes will be shorter.

In terms of miles traveled, the Seattle commute will result in 8,225,360 additional miles traveled annually by employees.
Read more »