Was anyone surprised to learn Fresno is on the verge of breaking its heat record? Sixteen of the 17 warmest years on record have occurred since 2001, with 2016 the warmest year ever recorded..
NASA cites global warming as the main cause of shrinking ice sheets, extreme weather events, decreased snow cover and the warming and acidification of oceans. This last effect is quite visual – 50 percent of the world’s coral reefs are now bleached, leaving seascapes filled with white skeleton-like structures devoid of life and color.
Meanwhile, President Trump has abdicated America’s leadership role in solving the problem by withdrawing from the Paris Accord. He ignores our military leaders, who report extreme weather patterns are aggravating social tensions, destabilizing regions and feeding the rise of extremist groups such ISIS; and that 128 military bases are threatened by rising sea levels… or already flooding.
Truly, the image of Nero fiddling while Rome burns could not be more apt. But there is still hope! While all positive action helps, only a true carbon dividend plan will use our own sense of self-interest to decrease greenhouse emissions, promote renewable energy and reduce health and security issues while growing our economy.
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Twyla Smith, Madera