Letters to the editor — Feb. 7, 2018

  • Wednesday, February 7, 2018 1:30am
  • Opinion

Viewing the squirrel through the nuts

Regarding “Look there’s a squirrel” (Letters to the Editor, Sequim Gazette, Jan. 24, page A-9):

It was very refreshing to see someone use actual verified data to try and support an opinion. Atmospheric C02 is at about 0.04 percent.

If you go a step further it would be clear how C02 can indeed act like a “super atom.” Simply put, C02 allows light from the sun in, the light turns into heat, then the atmospheric C02 slows down the heat from escaping back out into space. Consequently the planet heats up.

You question how such a small amount of C02 could control climate. My greenhouse helps answer that question.

On a recent sunny 45° Fahrenheit day my greenhouse heated up to 102° F inside. The greenhouse wall is only a thin 1/16 of an inch thick. Just like with C02, light shines through the plastic wall, transforms into heat inside and cannot escape quickly back out through the greenhouse wall.

This is known as the “greenhouse effect.”

Venus is now experiencing runaway “greenhouse effect” warming. The planet’s typical temperature is over 800° F.

You mentioned MIT scientist Richard Lindzen skepticism of C02’s effect on climate change. You might want to find a published open letter from all the other 22 MIT climate scientists. They strongly disagree with Lindzen and indicate why he is wrong. Lindzen is not a respected climate scientist.

John Konrath


Squirrely response

In reply (“Clarity, facts about climate change,” Letters to the Editor, Sequim Gazette, Jan. 31, page A-8) to my letter (“Episode 99 of ‘Look, There’s a Squirrel’,” Letters to the Editor, Sequim Gazette, Jan. 24, page A-9) on a carbon tax, the writer ignored the facts about carbon dioxide and went on to incorrectly claim I denied warming and don’t read both sides of the issue. The reply then incoherently rambled on about Galileo.

The issue isn’t whether the planet has warmed. Since the end of the last ice age over 11,000 years ago it has been warmer and colder than today. The issue is whether man is the cause of recent warming and many scientists plausibly argue humans aren’t. The science isn’t settled.

A carbon tax in Washington will have zero effect on temperature. Danish Statistician Bjorn Lomborg’s peer-reviewed study of the U.S. EPA’s proposed Clean Power Plan determined if the plan was fully enacted and remained in effect for the rest of this century it would reduce temperature rise by a trivial 0.023° Fahrenheit. Move the decimal several positions to the left to see the effect of a Washington carbon tax.

The Paris Climate Agreement won’t change temperature either. By the end of the century it will cost over $100 trillion and only reduce temperature by 0.3 degrees F.

The writer wants “to protect the environment at all costs.” The poor, minorities and rural communities will be hit the hardest. Democrats couldn’t care less.

A carbon tax is nothing more than liberal virtue-signaling. Liberals care much more about policies that make them feel good about themselves than they do about policies that make life better for people.

Peter Heisel


Logic vs. evidence

Peter Heisel, in his letter in the Jan. 24 issue, tries to substitute logic for rigorous scientific evidence his claim that there is too little carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to cause global warming.

By his reasoning, a virus particle would be too small to cause the flu; and there would not be enough CO2 in the air to serve as the main ingredient for growth of all of the trees and plant life on earth, including the food for humans and animals.

Heisel quotes a long-retired climate scientist for an opinion held by a very small minority of his colleagues.

CO2 is a powerful mediator of earth’s surface temperature. It is effective in reducing the loss of heat from the earth to space. See https://eapsweb.mit.edu/sites/default/files/Climate_Primer.pdf for detailed information on how this is known.

Heisel criticizes our governor for using “carbon” as shorthand for greenhouse gases. I understand that this jargon can be confusing; but it is meant to acknowledge that CO2 is not the only greenhouse gas of concern, methane is much more potent and also contains carbon.

I agree with Heisel that a state “Carbon Tax” may not be the best approach to the problem. However, increasing concentrations of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere is a serious problem that we must face. It should be addressed on a world-wide scale, now. Those with a big stake in the fossil-fuel economy are spending big bucks to confuse the issues and promote denial. Too many of our politicians are in league with them.

It is time that the public seeks out the truth and forces change.

Ted Lund


A bus drivers’ thanks

A thank you from school bus drivers, to:

Commuters and drivers. Thank you to those of you who are being careful and patient when a school bus driver drives slowly, flashes colored lights, blocks a roadway, takes time to assure the kids are safely seated, checks all roadway movement and then crawls on to repeat the routine. Thank you, for understanding a child is apt to dart into traffic or chase a butterfly across a roadway. Thank you for not speeding off in frustrated a rush. Please know your understanding, caring and good sense saves our kids from harm or worse.

Parents and guardians. Thank you for supporting and reinforcing your child’s good manners and safe bus behaviors. Thank you for encouraging your kids to understand the seriousness of bus safety. Thank you when your kids arrive in a calm manner and are well prepared for their day. Your good parenting and consistent guidance is greatly appreciated. You are helping to assure a safe bus environment, good travel experience and, hopefully, a positive day for all our kids.

Bus students. Thank you for listening and learning to understand that “those stupid bus rules” keep you safe. Thank you for understanding you are in danger when out of your protected seat area. Thank you for knowing that you must speak quietly and not make noises so your driver can hear the bus radio calls and focus on road traffic to protect you. Thank you for being responsible and knowing your bus driver cares about each of you and wants your bus to be a peaceful, safe and secure place.

Teachers and administrators. Thank you for understanding the intense conditions a driver manages while safeguarding our kids in a cramped, bouncy, noisy and often chaotic mobile setting. Thank you for encouraging students’ good manners and practicing respect for fellow students and drivers. Your daily teaching and influence is a reflection of our being able to keep our most valuable people, our kids, safe.

Again, thank you parents, guardians, teachers and school administrators for hopefully reviewing “Rules of Student Conduct for Students Riding Buses” with our students.

“School buses are the safest way for students , but children also need (be able) to do their part to stay alert and aware of their surroundings to prevent injury.” — National Safety Council

Cal Scott


Editor’s note: Scott is a Sequim School District bus driver.

Cradle-to-grave responsibility

Now is the time for political action to make manufacturers stop passing on the hidden costs of their production and require corporate cradle-to-grave responsibility.

China having just stopped importing recycling waste and the U.S. having just gifted corporations a huge tax reduction makes this the perfect time to enact this: quid pro quo.

Manufacturers have always passed on to all of us the hidden costs of manufacturing and packaging goods.

Owners have created a consumer economy instead of a sustainable one and thereby are pocketing an unethical percentage of profit.

When individuals make something, they learn to clean it up. If corporations are citizens with citizen rights they should have citizen responsibilities too.

It is time for waste material to be the first concern of design and not the last. We know that many products are not built to last like they were in the 1950s. Only if manufacturers have cradle-to-grave responsibility will products be built and packaged to reduce waste.

Planned obsolescence and making single-use “disposable” items benefits the owners of production while raping and fouling the nest we all live in.

Karen Teig


Limit eyes on our classified documents

In my opinion, classified documents should be limited to those that affect national security in dealing with foreign powers.

I read the Nunes memo and I came away with the following observation. Much to the peril of we Americans, document classification is used to conceal the chicanery of ideological, self-serving bureaucrats that people our government in ever increasing numbers.

Ethan Harris


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