Bloody procrastination

Bloody procrastination I am writing to thank you for your editorial What Does The Sand Smell Like? published in the September 16 issue of the Yukon News. Since 1998 I have had the privilege of guiding in the High Arctic on northern Ellesmere Island. It h

I am writing to thank you for your editorial What Does The Sand Smell Like? published in the September 16 issue of the Yukon News.

Since 1998 I have had the privilege of guiding in the High Arctic on northern Ellesmere Island. It has disturbed me for years to listen to the political rhetoric and spin generated by North America’s conservative parties. The science is clear, the evidence is there. I have walked on it, looked at it and touched it. Only in North America has this issue been politicized into a left-wing/right-wing issue.

The best summary of evidence available to us is that presented by the International Panel on Climate Change in its “Summary for Policymakers” and is available at: http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/syr/en/spm.html. I urge all to take the time to read this document for themselves.

As a father, I worry about the impact our changing world will have on my children and future grandchildren.

As a man who has grown up in both First and Third World countries, I worry about the moral obligation imposed on me Ð one of the many causing climate change Ð by the billions of unfortunate who will suffer its greatest effects.

We now know that we are causing these problems; we cannot claim ignorance.

Climate change is a social justice issue. As far as it is possible, Canada will be one of the winners of the climate-change shakedown. We have ample natural resources, a relatively small population, the financial resources needed to make changes, and our agricultural output may even increase.

The longer Canada drags its feet on climate change, the more money we will make from the carbon-intensive tarsands, and the longer politicians deny the inevitable truth, the more donations will flow from oil companies to party coffers. We do so, however, with blood on our hands. Our comfort comes at the cost of the lives of those less fortunate.

It disturbs me that during this territorial election I have yet to hear one word from any of the three main parties regarding climate change.

What will the Yukon government do to decrease its carbon footprint? What will the Yukon government do to prepare for the inevitable negative effects of climate change here in our home?

This is not a left-wing/right-wing political issue. This is a scientific issue with clear evidence and recommended courses of action. This is not an issue that can be dumped on federal or international politicians. This is an issue that must be tackled at all levels of government and at the level of the individual.

Dave Weir

Haines Junction

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