Reviews | Not doing enough against climate change

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For the publisher:

Re “Dozens of countries pledge to stop using coal energy” (press article, November 5):

Our climate of anger demands an end to our burning of coal for energy. Its extraction harms human health, its transport consumes fossil fuels, and its combustion emits greenhouse gases, heavy metal toxins and particulate pollution. This wise decision to ditch coal taken by a long list of countries at the Glasgow Climate Summit is such good news.

But, unfortunately, the United States is not on this list. We are still burning this dirty fuel for a significant portion of our electricity, and we are missing out on the great opportunity to get clean. This news is a huge disappointment for many of us.

Politics is at stake here. It’s so hard to fathom that the solutions to a global climate emergency, with all the insidious problems that come with it, rest with a single West Virginia politician. No words describe my dismay!

Sally Courtright
Albany, New York State

For the publisher:

Re “’Justice for my daughter’: parents launch plea on air pollution” (COP26 Climate Talks, nytimes.com, November 5):

I am a high school student and I find it extremely heartbreaking to hear the direct effect air pollution has had on the lives of so many people. The stories of those mothers whose children grapple with the effects were particularly powerful. While climate change may seem like an abstract concept, the personal stories and losses of many families around the world are not, and I hope these stories awaken our world to the seriousness of this problem.

Regarding COP26, I have the impression that nothing changes despite the general effort for climate justice. I am concerned that countries do not change their practices, or that the changes they make are not enough. As Greta Thunberg said, COP26 is “sort of turning into a greenwash campaign, a public relations campaign”.

What can we do if those who lead us do not get involved in the fight for our planet? When I think about our future now, I imagine a dark, almost apocalyptic world filled with pollution. How can we envision a bright future when we live in a world where neither our environment nor our health are priorities?

Sahana Hariharan
San jose, california

For the publisher:

If the Biden administration is serious about limiting greenhouse gas emissions, it must tackle the the biggest contributor: Raise animals for food – not for fossil fuels, as many prefer to believe (“Biden administration moves to cut methane from oil and gas rigs”, news article, Nov. 2.

According to the Worldwatch article “Livestock and climate change”, Raising cows, pigs and chickens for food is responsible for more than half of greenhouse gas emissions, a figure that has been underestimated and often ignored. Even when the Big Meat problem surfaces in the climate degradation discourse, as it does briefly in this article, it is given little weight and its impact minimized.

If we are to have a chance to change our current course, we must face the truth about the meat industry’s key role in climate degradation, and not stay focused on fossil fuels, despite their devastating contribution. global greenhouse gas emissions.

Ben Lotka
Philadelphia cream

For the publisher:

I hope that climate change deniers find it increasingly difficult to defend their cause. However, in a world of several billion people, each of us will have to take some responsibility for the current situation. As unpleasant as the idea is, we may have to drastically reduce the disposables that obstruct our waste stream, we may have to limit air travel, we may even need to limit the amount of meat we eat. to reduce methane.

I’m sure there are other small sacrifices we can each make, but we can’t leave everything to the government.

Surah Jeselsohn
Bronx

For the publisher:

Re “The world must stop the oil. Africa’s proposal: rich countries first ”(press article, November 10):

Indeed! Today, more than a billion people, including several hundred million in Africa and India alone, live in poverty for lack of reliable energy. As an economist, I believe that imposing “green mandates” on developing countries is no different from economic tariffs. It must inevitably delay their development, as well as their ability to export their natural resources to the rest of the world.

What makes it unacceptable is that the richest countries hide their intentions under a robe of morality. If the planet is to be saved, then these savings must start at home rather than forcing developing countries into an existence that even the poorest of the poor in rich countries would not accept.

Conversation of opinion
The climate and the world are changing. What will be the challenges of the future and how to respond?

Marc Castelino
Newark
The writer is associate professor of finance at Rutgers Business School.

For the publisher:

In “The Fight Against Vaccines Is Not About Freedom” (column, November 2), Paul Krugman lists many excellent reasons why those who claim their “freedom” not to be vaccinated put others at risk. , but he does not mention a crucial factor. a.

The more unvaccinated people allow the virus to spread, the greater the chance that a new variant will emerge, and the next one might find ways to bypass the immune defenses of those of us who are already vaccinated.

In addition to not having the “freedom” to “throw the garbage in the streets,” as Mr. Krugman so aptly puts it, there are many “freedoms” that citizens sacrifice for the common good, including his example. vaccination requirements for going to school. There is no “freedom” to drive on the left side of the road, to follow stop signs, or to hit someone in the nose. The freedom of your fist stops at the end of my nose.

So let’s stop talking about “freedom”, especially since it gives the Covid-19 virus the “freedom” to kill us all. Is this the “freedom” that Fox News and Republicans opposed to vaccine warrants want to protect?

James berkman
Boston

For the publisher:

Compulsory vaccination against Covid for workers does not violate their freedom. They don’t have to be vaccinated. They can choose to get tested for Covid, work for a small employer not yet covered by vaccination mandates, or leave the workforce.

Covid vaccination protects people in the workplace from infection, with the benefit of protecting the vaccinated worker, the worker’s family and friends and other contacts, and the public if public contact is part of the responsibilities of the worker. worker.

Higher immunization levels are the only way for the country and the world to bring the pandemic under control.

We can think of vaccination as the consumption of alcohol. Adults can drink whatever they want in the privacy of their own home. It only endangers the drinker. They cannot drive a vehicle while intoxicated because it puts others at risk. This is why there are state and federal laws against drunk driving.

And that is why there are now requirements for Covid vaccination in the workplace, with School vaccine requirements begin soon in California: to protect others.

Daniel fink
Beverly hills, california
The writer is an internist.

For the publisher:

Re “This year’s Thanksgiving meal is about to take the wallet” (homepage, October 26):

These price increases may be justified and late.

For decades, Americans have had the privilege of having access to an assortment of inexpensive food items. We took advantage and splurged on some ridiculously extravagant holiday meals, Thanksgiving being the most over the top. Now that food prices are rising, we are starting to complain and complain that we cannot afford to eat as extravagantly as we are used to eating.

There are many issues underlying the price increase (supply chain issues, climate-related product shortages, etc.) that should have been factored into food prices from the start. We must always take into account the impacts on the environment, on workers and on the supply in the prices of our products.

If wages are not high enough for people to buy basic necessities such as food, wages should also be increased. But it’s yet another long-awaited development in American society.

Dylan barclay
Brooklyn


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