Re "Free the pipeline, Obama," Opinion, Feb. 4
Those who oppose Keystone XL aren't doing so primarily to make the pipeline a "litmus test issue for climate seriousness," as Jonah Goldberg writes.
Rather, they're taking a principled stand. We must stop the juggernaut of business-as-usual that is leading inexorably to climate disruption.
Environmentalists recognize that our civilization depends on vast amounts of energy and we cannot stop using fossil fuels overnight. But with more frequent extreme weather showing up right on schedule and rising sea levels, we absolutely must replace fossil fuels with sustainable energy as soon as possible.
Dismissive statements like Goldberg's just sow confusion and make the task even harder. Unfortunately, many of our "leaders" in the media and in Congress are the worst laggards when it comes to acknowledging reality and proposing solutions.
Goldberg is correct that most people rank strengthening the economy as more important than taking action on climate change. After all, it wasn't the love of animals that halted much of the world's whaling; it was the fact that it was no longer economically viable.
But on global warming, it will be the economy that wakes people up to human climate meddling.
It is not in the economic, health or environmental interest of the United States to allow Keystone XL to be built. Never mind an expensive tomato; the new weather may yield no tomatoes.
Climate health equals economic prosperity.
What rubbish. We use a poll to determine the importance of climate change?