To the Editor:

Feeling the heat? Most Americans (70%) feel that climate change affects their local community and that our government is doing too little. We must act now to avoid losing our planet as we know it. In the past, the earth experienced fluctuations in temperature and climate.

 However, we are witnessing the first time that human activity is responsible for marked global warming over the past 175 years (since the Industrial Revolution) through burning fossil fuels for our energy needs resulting in heat-trapping atmospheric emissions. This accumulative “free” pollution is a market failure of using fossil fuel energy with carbon dioxide (CO2) remaining in the atmosphere for 300-1000 years. Keeping “business as usual”, we risk tripling our CO2 in 75 years — raising temperatures even higher with irreversible chain reaction feedback loops, such as melting polar ice (trading white “Albedo” reflectivity for dark ocean solar heat absorption), deforestation (flipping forests from helpful carbon sinks to harmful sources), melting permafrost (containing twice the atmosphere’s CO2 potentially adding another 150 billion tons) and warming atmosphere (increased heat-trapping water vapor altering jet stream and extreme weather patterns).

Exercise your political will! Please vote for a livable world! Our children and grandchildren’s lives depend on it!

Minta Phillips


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