My recent letter in the Neepawa Press, "It's time to wake up and smell the smoke," has brought quite a negative response from friends and others.
Since my last letter, raging wildfires of epic proportions have plagued northern California, displacing as many people as was the case in Saskatchewan earlier this summer (13 thousand). The California blazes confounded veteran firefighters, who had never seen anything like them. Similar fires are now erupting in Arizona, Washington State, Portugal and Spain.
So, disagree with me, if you will. Just let it be known that, by so doing, you are also disagreeing with the accumulated wisdom (and virtually complete consensus) of our top, renowned climatologists the world over; Not to mention the World Council of Churches, the Governor of California, the Premiers of BC and Ontario, the US Military, the World Bank, the US Department of Energy, Natural Resources Canada, President Obama and now, the Pope.
My biggest regret is that my previous "provocatively-worded" letter upset some friends. But it was that way for a reason.
In my experience, the "low-key" kind get no response at all. As a science writer, I spent weeks researching an in-depth, illustrated, fact-based article earlier this year, quoting scientific experts from the International Boreal Forest Research Association. The title said it all: "Only Heroic Efforts Will Spare Earth's Mighty Boreal Forest From the Worst Ravages of Climate Change - Experts." No opinionated or provocative statements by me - just the facts!
Nobody read it.
Scant weeks later, this year's disastrous wildfire season was raging in Canada, earlier than usual and worse than usual - a scenario predicted, in detail in my story.
So, as our planet continues to be dangerously degraded by our current human behaviour, remaining silent (or even "low-key") is not an option for me.
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