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Letters to the Editor

Only an intensive effort will ward off perilous climate change

In this Oct. 13, 2018 file photo demonstrators hold placards during a rally against the climate change in Paris when demonstrators in cities across France and Europe were marching against climate change. (AP Photo/Michel Euler, file)

Mona Charen’s piece on the fact that attention to climate change — which she dubs “hysteria” — will not solve our problems is totally wrong. “Hysteria” is the only thing that will solve our problem!

Climate change is slow, and not apparent from day to day, so it’s hard to whip up interest in making financial and convenience sacrifices in order to stop emitting greenhouse gases. But as recent hurricanes, fires and floods have shown, the planet i.e. our very existence -— is in peril.

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Al Gore’s efforts to “sow panic” were not enough! We haven’t heeded the call of scientific proof that if we heedlessly burn fossil fuels, we’ll have cataclysmic weather events, droughts i.e. loss of food production, limited available fresh water, and sea level rise that will flood major cities. Do we want to leave this chaotic and dangerous state of being to our children and grandchildren?

Ms. Charen also derides the loss of nuclear power. She forgets Fukushima, et.al. and the fact that there is no safe place to store the nuclear waste that remains radioactive for centuries.

We do have options – natural gas, as a bridge, to viable solar, wind,hydroelectric, geothermal and wave power. Developing these sources of clean, renewable energy provides jobs, cleaner air and water, healthier soil, and SAVES THE PLANET.

Too bad we don’t have a president who understands the concept of the greater good.

Carol Kraines, Deerfield

Don’t privatize water system

Ald. Ameya Pawar would like to “public-tize” Chicago’s water — by which he means giving away or selling stocks in Chicago’s municipal water system.

But Chicago water is already publicly owned and not for profit, so there are no dividends to distribute. What Chicagoans need are safeguards against water privatization schemes, which would mean skyrocketing water bills. They need fair water rates and assistance with their bills.

The Water for All ordinance sponsored by Ald. Carlos Ramirez Rosa would do just that. It would require voter approval before privatizing the city’s water utility and would set up a water affordability program for low-income households. Chicago water bills have tripled over the last decade, hurting the poorest families the most. The Water for All ordinance would provide assistance to families with annual household incomes less than twice the federal poverty line, or $50,200 for a family of four. The cost of the program would be paid for by commercial and industrial users, not ratepayers or taxpayers. Ald/ Pawar is right — low income families need relief from high water bills. But the sensible answer is already on the table: support the Water for All Ordinance.

Jenya Polozova, River West

Didn’t take a knee

When President Donald Trump, at the state funeral for President Bush at the National Cathedral, entered the pew in which former Presidents Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, and Jimmy Carter and their wives were seated, they did not stand up. If Trump thought this showed disrespect, he should realize it could have been worse. At least they didn’t look the other way and take a knee.

Gerald Weisberg, M.D. Lake View