To the editor:
Most businesses and individuals do the right thing and are paying to have someone cart away their trash. If that didn't happen we would be awash in all kinds of garbage posing immediate health and safety problems. We now know that the carbon dioxide emitted by the fossil-fuel industry goes basically unchecked (free dumping) resulting in more natural disasters, more outbreaks of disease, more food shortages, and more sea level rise. Personal actions alone are not enough. We need large changes in energy policy.
Recently President Obama put action behind his words when he announced his administration's climate plan that calls for new energy efficiency standards, implements clean energy production to power six million homes by 2020, and utilizes the Clean Air Act to cut carbon pollution from toxic power plants.
The president's plan will limit air pollution from new and existing power plants that threatens our climate, economy, and the health of our families. This will not be easy because the fossil fuel industry is very wealthy and powerful. The president's plan is a place to start.
To avoid greater damage to our soil, water and air the president also needs to say no to the Canada's Keystone XL pipeline. Because tar sand oil is so hard to extract it requires vast amounts of energy and chemicals to remove it from the ground and send through the pipeline. The tar sands oil industry has devastated huge tracts of land and water in Canada.
This pipeline will leak as others have. It would carry a toxic mix of tar sand oil and chemical additives over our aquifers then be processed and exported to other countries. Clearly we need energy, yet our very survival depends upon clean water, air and soil. The time is now to move towards energy that comes from clean and sustainable sources.
Please support the president's energy policy and help him find the courage to deny the Keystone pipeline.