I was born and raised in New York City, and my family and friends still live there. Hurricane Sandy rocked the city in a way I have never seen before. I’m grateful to hear that engineers and elected officials are already discussing how to protect the city from future monster storms. However, to address the root of the problem, I am urging our politicians — and all of us — to band together to fight climate change.
It is strange to live in a time when the fate of the planet is being decided — that is, whether or not we raise the Earth’s temperature by 2 degrees Celsius. The problem is that ordinary citizens feel helpless. If you want to turn your lights on in Asheville, you have to pay Progress Energy to burn coal for your electricity. Even with recent improvements, they still burn coal like a giant campfire to generate steam turbines — a truly ancient technology.
Burning coal releases more carbon dioxide than burning any other fossil fuel source (not to mention massive amounts of toxic air and water pollution). The International Energy Agency estimates that at least 1,400 coal-fired power plants will be built in the world by 2030. If this is true, than the odds of our planet having a stable climate for our grandchildren is impossible. We have to move beyond coal in order to save our planet.
Last time we saw a storm like Sandy was never. If that isn’t a wake up call, I don’t know what is. Let’s do what we can and urge the politicians who represent us to fight climate change in order to save the planet and the future of the human race.
— Charles Wright