To the editor:
Perhaps you have heard the story about how to boil a frog without having him jump out of the pot. You just raise the temperature so slowly that he doesn’t get so agitated that he jumps out. Folks we are that frog and the pot that we getting heated in is our very own earth. If we don’t do more than we are now, we are going to get boiled! In spite of the small but vocal opposition say, there is no doubt that we, or rather the CO2 we emit in our energy systems, are the cause. A even more important fact is that your grandchildren will have to live in a world where we have either responded to and mitigated the effects of our current increased CO2 generation, or in a world where the effects of this crisis will produce a world that could well be much like our worst nightmare.
We can be like the ostrich and hide our head in the sand, but the the level of CO2 will increase at a rate that will lead to a very different world. Using an analogy presented by Anthony Leiserowitz, Director of the Yale Project on Climate Change, our human body can respond to an increase in temperature of one or two degrees, but if our temperature goes up five degrees the possibility of death is very real—that five degrees is what is being predicted by the latest climate change models. So we can just sit on our lily pad and croak out our song and end up in the soup or we can start to change how we create and use energy and allow our grandchildren to live to enjoy another beautiful spring. The choice is ours and the time is now.
Check out the NASA article “How Much More Will Earth Warm?” for scientific information on these estimates. The quote there is “average surface temperatures could rise between 2°C and 6°C by the end of the 21st century.”
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