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Seattle Times letters to the editor

Topic: environment

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January 9, 2015 at 4:27 PM

Readers’ priorities: What should the Legislature focus on?

Kelly Shea / The Seattle Times

Kelly Shea / The Seattle Times

Editor’s note: Last Sunday, The Times Opinion page asked readers what the Legislature’s priority should be this session. Here are selected responses:

The environment

In laying out its priorities for the Legislature in 2015, The Seattle Times editorial board hit on an agenda that is absolutely important. But it overlooked a crucial item: preserving natural infrastructure.

We need clean water to drink, a resilient Puget Sound, vibrant forests and clean air to breathe. These are foundational to all other issues. A healthy environment underpins human mental and physical health and our region’s livelihoods.

Caring for Washington’s environment is caring for the bedrock of our state. Living in the midst of natural beauty, we sometimes take for granted the incredible natural resources that are the foundation for our state’s economy and quality of life.

Mary Ruckelshaus, Seattle

Fund public education

As the state constitution declares, the state’s first priority is to amply fund public education. The constitution is very


Comments | More in Politics | Topics: education, environment, Legislature

January 8, 2015 at 6:05 AM

Keystone XL pipeline: More than an issue of job creation

When state Sen. Kevin Ranker, D-Orcas Island, spoke on the UW Seattle campus last winter, he told the audience that in order to get attention, an issue had to be framed in the context of job creation. Such is the unfortunate state of our political discourse, and this tactic is being used in the debate over…


Comments | More in Environment | Topics: Brendan Philip, economy, environment

December 21, 2014 at 8:52 AM

Sinking oil prices: Oil prices don’t reflect its true cost

Low oil prices aren’t really so great for consumers or the economy when the full cost is taken into account [“Why oil prices are plunging, what it means for you,” Nation & World, Dec. 16]. Major insurers, the Pentagon, most major employers and even some oil companies agree that there will be immense…


Comments | More in Oil | Topics: carbon tax, climate change, Davis Oldham

October 8, 2014 at 5:59 AM

Coal exports: Economic benefits don’t outweigh environmental impact

Shoichi Itoh’s guest column in The Seattle Times was interesting, but only lightly touched, if that, on some very important points [“The importance of Asia in the coal-export debate,” Opinion, Oct. 6]. First, U.S. investment firms are recommending against investing in companies that export coal. China is moving much more aggressively than the U.S….


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

July 29, 2014 at 7:03 AM

Victoria sewage: The city is being a bad neighbor

The people of Victoria, B.C., apparently are special [“Victoria’s sewage does not pollute Washington shores,” Opinion, July 25]. They get to do what most First World cities do not — discharge raw sewage, in this case into the Strait of Juan de Fuca. It never ceases to amaze me that when somebody just doesn’t…


Comments | More in Environment | Topics: B.C., environment, Paul Gutowski

July 11, 2014 at 7:04 AM

Water-quality standards: Public has important duty to stay informed

Lynda Mapes gives a thorough assessment of proposed new water-quality thresholds [“Getting tougher on water pollution standards … but will the water really be cleaner?” Local News, July 7]. Contamination measured in the fish we eat turns out to be the canary in this political coal mine. More fish in our diet contributes unhealthful…


Comments | More in Environment | Topics: Art James, environment, pollution

July 5, 2014 at 4:15 PM

EPA regulations: Cathy McMorris Rodgers has voted lockstep against environmental legislation

A recent Seattle Times editorial stated that U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers does not represent the opinions and wishes of the people of Washington state [“Cathy McMorris Rodgers needs to take a stand for Ex-Im Bank,” Opinion, June 24], and this has surely been verified by her guest column in The Seattle Times…


Comments | More in Environment | Topics: Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Cheryl Edelman, environment

July 1, 2014 at 1:12 PM

Reduced cost of natural gas delays conversion to renewable energy

Good, America is reducing emissions [“The real energy revolution shrinking carbon dioxide emissions? It’s fracking,” Opinion, June 29].  However, burning natural gas is not the answer.  Fracking operations burn excess methane in flares, and methane (a more potent greenhouse gas) is leaked directly into the atmosphere. The reduced cost of natural gas delays our…


Comments | More in Energy | Topics: climate change, energy, environment

May 10, 2014 at 8:35 AM

Transportation megaprojects: Road project funding could go to Metro

The billions of dollars we are spending on mega road projects could buy a dramatically expanded public transit system that offered free service to all [“Troubled transportation megaprojects add to political gridlock,” Local News, May 6]. That would clear a lot of cars from the road and make all this construction unnecessary. When one…


Comments | More in Transportation | Topics: environment, Highway 520, highway 99

May 9, 2014 at 4:34 PM

Climate change: Fracking domestically has a big environmental impact

Steaming water, discharged from a coal-to-gas plant in Inner Mongolia, spreads out over the landscape. (Courtesy of Zhu Ye / Special to The Seattle Times)

I am writing in response to the article in The Times “China’s coal plants guzzle scarce water” [News, May 4]. The article states, “When operating at full capacity, the Datang International plant will require more than 7 billion gallons of water each year.” Any outrage expressed by our country toward China for this water waste is drastically misplaced.

Our country’s own fracking industry dwarfs China in water usage. Fracking, as many know, is


Comments | More in Climate change | Topics: climate change, CO2, coal

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