Follow us:

Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

November 8, 2013 at 7:03 AM

No uncertainty about climate change

Environmental activists carry colorful signs as they march through the streets of downtown Pittsburgh targeting fracking, coal, nuclear power, and the dangers of climate change on  Oct. 21. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Environmental activists carry colorful signs as they march through the streets of downtown Pittsburgh targeting fracking, coal, nuclear power, and the dangers of climate change on Oct. 21. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

It is time to act

I am a statistician. I remember the old so-called “uncertainty” about whether smoking causes cancer. There was good science and clear statistical evidence for the harm, but tobacco companies and a few hired scientists managed to delay action by spreading doubt, and people kept dying [“Obama signs order on response to climate change,” Online, Nov. 1].

We’re in the same situation now — a few deniers are delaying action on climate change, claiming uncertainty.

The only real uncertainty left is just how bad it will be, and that is no excuse for inaction. If you’re driving too fast and are about to plow into a crowd of schoolchildren, do you keep going full-speed ahead because you don’t know how many of them you’ll kill?

Oysters are dying. Trees are dying. Coral is dying. Polar bears are dying. Crops are dying. And people are dying. It is time to act.

Tim Hesterberg, Ph.D. Seattle

Comments | More in Environment | Topics: climate change, environment

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►