Year 3, Month 10, Day 11: Change Is Gonna Come

The Des Moines Register offers an op-ed titled: “Climate Change Is About Jobs And The Economy.” Indeed:

Climate chaos is not a future threat. It’s real, it’s here today, and it’s causing misery in Iowa. Left unchecked, it will get worse.

Iowa is ground central for climate change. Almost 60 percent of the state is in extreme drought, with 80 percent of its soils moisture deficient. Nearly three quarters of the corn crop is threatened, driving the price from $5.50 a bushel last year to over $8.

If food prices climb as predicted, a family of four will spend $600 more next year to buy food.

Hot enough for you? From rivers of dead fish to dry wells, Iowans are experiencing firsthand why America’s decade of ignoring climate science has been a horrible mistake. Both the International Energy Agency and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development warn that unless we implement energy saving practices immediately we will, perhaps as early as 2017, lock in 6 degrees Celsius warming.

The impacts Iowa is experiencing now have come from a 1.5 degree warming. Unless Iowa acts to capture the green economy, it faces a grim prospect, both from the weather and from an economy strangled by its fossil fuel past.

Those old chestnuts are rattling around in my brain these days. Sent October 4:

When it comes to climate change, the old saying is really true: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Once the greenhouse effect has accelerated, we won’t have very many options left — and the choices will range from devastatingly expensive to simply devastating. To be sure, addressing the aftereffects of our past century’s worth of fossil-fuel consumption won’t be cheap — but it’s going to be a heck of a lot cheaper if we start right away. Waiting until climate change intensifies to the point that its effects are inescapable and undeniable is like delaying therapy until the tumor becomes malignant.

Self-styled “skeptics” who deny the work of the international climate science community are doing America, and the world, a grave disservice. On environmental, humanitarian, and economic grounds, a robust and comprehensive strategy for mitigating the effects of global warming is the right thing to do.

Warren Senders

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