To the Editor:
In Tom Rolfe’s recent letter addressing climate change and its causes, his statement that the EPA, being a “White House control agency,” should not be trusted, is quite naive.
Many of our very best scientists work in government agencies, and the people of any government agency are influenced not only by the White House, but also by senators and members of Congress from both parties. However, he may have a point when he says we should be wary of White House interference. Who could forget when political appointees in the George W. Bush administration, who had ties to the oil industry, were caught editing NASA reports to make global warming seem less of a concern than scientists had proven in their research.
If Rolfe is skeptical about government climate scientists, perhaps he would consider the research being conducted by Paul Mayewski at the University of Maine’s Climate Change Institute. In an October 2013 article, Mayewski stated, “I used to say to the skeptics, thank you for questioning what we do and for making us think more about the science, because it’s a healthy process. As of three or four years ago, I gave up saying that, because now the skeptics are trying to blur the facts. They are trying to provide misinformation, take information out of context, and make it a political issue, which it is not. They’re not basing their arguments at all on the science.”
After hearing Mayewski speak a number of times, I now understand that due to climate change, there will be winners and losers. We should be preparing now for the negative impacts, trying to identify coming opportunities associated with change, and acting now to reduce our use of fossil fuels (which will have a huge positive effect on human health).
Rolfe also misquoted Christiana Figueres, the U.N.’s top climate change official, who did not, in fact, admit “that the goal of environmental activists is not to save the world but to destroy capitalism.”
Rolfe’s letters also have consistently ignored the issue of ocean acidification, which on its own requires humanity to move away from fossil fuel use.
Human beings are affecting the earth and the loss of species on a geological scale.
For me, someone who grew up in a fishing family in Down East Maine, who loves the ocean, and who makes my living from the sea, the status quo is not okay.