In his letter to the editor, “Another look at climate change” (Auburn Reporter, Aug. 18), Jim Koubele wonders how small amounts of greenhouse gas could affect us.
We all know that very small amounts of contaminants in food or water can cause disease. It is not surprising then that relatively small amounts of greenhouse gas can trap solar energy, resulting in warming of the atmosphere and oceans. Furthermore, the recent increase in the levels of CO2 in the atmosphere is unprecedented.
Human activity in the last 100 years has caused a spike in greenhouse gases that is unlike anything that has been seen on this planet for millions of years, as shown by the ice core samples that Mr. Koubele mentions.
Undisputed scientific evidence shows that average global temperatures are on the rise. And yet, the U.S. spending on climate change is a tiny fraction of what is suggested in the previous letter. Instead, the U.S. has allowed Asian countries to dominate the emerging renewable energy markets. Most solar panels are made in China instead of here.
We have the manufacturing capacity to lead the world in the clean energy revolution, but we are allowing those jobs to be created in China and India. Everyone stands to benefit from an economic boom that creates family-wage jobs and (bonus) promotes clean air and water. All we have to do is end our stubborn reliance on fossil fuels that pollute our planet.
– Brian Gunn