By Eric Stillwell of Eugene, Oregon. Eric describes himself as a 'writer who lives in Eugene, where he graduated from the University of Oregon in 1985 with what he believes was an ironically appropriate "BS" in Political Science.' He spent 20 years working in Hollywood on shows like "Star Trek: The Next Generation" and "The Dead Zone", and returned to Eugene in 2005.
It seems odd to me that so many out-of-state climate-change deniers would be interested in Eugene’s local newspaper. Even I didn’t read The Register Guard after I graduated from the University of Oregon and moved to Hollywood in the late 1980s. But now that I’m back, I’m a subscriber.
Still, the steady stream of letter writers who’ve come out of the woodwork to defend George Taylor of the Oregon Climate Service and his doubts about the degree of human responsibility for global warming, don’t seem to be the kind of people who drop into Marché Café each morning for an espresso and the latest edition of Eugene’s daily.
I mean, seriously.
One of the letter authors this week was a Professor Emeritus of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia, and another one was a Consulting Meteorologist from Sacramento. Maybe Taylor called in a few favors from the last handful of scientists left on Earth who don’t believe that humans have played a significant role in climate change. Or perhaps there is a secret society of climate-change deniers who track these things and then respond en mass like the operatives of a campaign war room during an election cycle. It makes one wonder if they would all make a pilgrimage to Tehran if President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad were to sponsor an international conference for climate change deniers.
Apparently these out-of-state “scientists” were offended when our State Senator Vicki Walker (D-Eugene) made remarks, published in the same newspaper, criticizing Taylor for his atypical beliefs on global warming. I imagine they were really upset when the world’s leading scientists released their new report on climate change last week in Paris.
It hasn’t been a good year so far for climate change deniers. First the Democrats regained control of the U.S. Congress and the Oregon House, then Al Gore was nominated for an Oscar and a Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to educate the world about the adverse effects of global warming.
Now Vicki Walker criticizes one of their own. What is the world coming to?
The debate about whether there has been human influence on climate change is over.
There is no reason to waste any more time or newsprint writing to The Register Guard to try and convince us otherwise.
Besides, what harm could possibly come from an effort to reduce greenhouse gases in our atmosphere? Even if we spent a trillion dollars on our collective efforts and it turns out humans really don’t have any influence on climate change, still the money would have been better spent than fighting wars in the Middle East. And the result would be bluer skies, cleaner air and healthier lives for the 6 billion people already living on the planet, and the next 3 billion that will be joining us by mid century.
The success of green industries will create millions of new jobs and become the leading indicators of a healthy, growing, and sustainable economy. And at the very least, any effort to reduce our dependency on foreign oil will bring us a real step closer to insuring our own national security and eliminating the need to fight wars over petroleum.
Personally, I’m very pleased to have Vicki Walker as my State Senator, and I appreciate her leadership in fighting global warming at the State level.
I encourage Blue Oregon readers in the southern Willamette Valley to come out and show your support for our State leaders. Senator Walker will be co-hosting a Town Hall Forum with Eugene’s State Representatives Chris Edwards and Nancy Nathanson on Saturday, February 17th. They will be joined by Lane County Commissioner Bill Fleenor. The forum will begin at 1:00 PM at the Irving Grange, 1011 Irvington Road.