Press-Republican

Columns

March 3, 2013

We may ignore or deny it, but climate change is occurring

The National Academy of Sciences was created by an act of Congress and signed into law by President Lincoln on March 3, 1863.

It is the top scientific advisory body in the United States and has advised the nation on all matters of science in times of both peace and war for the past 150 years. The members are elected by their peers, in recognition of achievement in their respective fields.

On May 7, 2010, the academy issued an open letter in the prestigious journal Science on the subject of “Climate Change and the Integrity of Science.” It was signed by 11 Nobel laureates and 255 National Academy of Sciences members in fields related to climate science. The letter received media coverage in both the United States and globally.

Just what did the letter say?

It included five summary points:

▶ “The planet is warming due to increasing concentrations” of greenhouse gases.

▶ “(That) is due to human activities, especially the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation.”

▶ “Natural causes … are now being overwhelmed by human-induced changes.”

▶ “Warming the planet will cause many other climatic patterns to change at speeds unprecedented in modern times.”

▶ “The combination of these complex climate changes threatens coastal communities and cities, our food and water supplies.”

Has this letter generated any U.S government policy decisions since to address these concerns? No. 

Our House of Representatives and, perhaps less so, the Senate, are in a state of denial.

According to an article published Feb. 21 in the Guardian by Suzanne Goldenberg, “hundreds of millions of dollars” have been spent “on anti-climate action, anti-solar energy and anti-wind energy campaigns” to sow disinformation, confusion and distrust of the science supporting climate change. This money is coming from Donors Trust and Donors Capital Fund, “promising anonymity to their conservative billionaire patrons …”

Meanwhile our planet’s weather, and climate, continues to reflect the points made in the National Academy of Sciences letter.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • ouellette.jpg Web doctor always gets it right

    I have access to the collected medical knowledge of all recorded history at my fingertips, columnist Steve Ouellette writes.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • colin_read.jpg Airport projects can benefit local economy

    Using a local workforce keeps wages and spending in the community if it can be done in a cost-effective manner, according to columnist Colin Read.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gast_Richard.jpg Producers can recycle tubing

    Project allows maple-syrup makers to conveniently dispose of their used tubing in an environmentally friendly way, according to columnist Richard Gast.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Terry_Mattingly.jpg Easter with doubters and the 'nones'

    Should more pastors ask this blunt question: "Do you really believe Jesus was raised from the dead?" wonders religion columnist Terry Mattingly.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Black_Peter_2014_cropped.jpg Canadiens are Canada's team

    The National Hockey League playoffs are underway, and for Canadiens fans, many of whom likely reside in the Montreal "suburb" of Plattsburgh, it is a time of hope and joy.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • little_mug.jpg There's no saw like an old saw Kaye and I laughed ourselves silly the other day as we tried to top each other with our own sayings from childhood, columnist Gordie Little writes.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Denenberg_Stu1.jpg Privacy concerns make a comeback

    There's a growing concern amongst the millennials, columnist Stu Denenberg writes.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • paul_grasso.jpg Several options exist for downtown

    Pedestrian mall just one idea that could be good for city's economic future, according to columnist Paul Grasso.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • colin_read.jpg Government can't create success on its own

    It takes a grass-roots community effort of people working together to assure future accomplishment, according to columnist Colin Read.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hagar_mug1.jpg Farmers strive for sustainability

    Conserving the land and assuring long-term profitability are two of the key goals for farmers these days, according to columnist Peter Hagar.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

Peter Black: Canadian Dispatch

Lois Clermont, Editor

Cornell Cooperative Extension
Richard Gast: Cornell Ag Extension

Bob Grady

Guest Columns
Peter Hagar: Cornell Ag Connection

Health Advice

Ray Johnson: Climate Science
Gordie Little: Small Talk

Terry Mattingly: On Religion

Steve Ouellette: You Had To Ask

Colin Read: Everybody's Business

Pinch of Time