Opinion

Climate Crisis is Unmasked and Ready to Wash Over Us

Human health is closely aligned with the health of the planet. Protecting the environment shouldn’t be a partisan issue. (istock)

The problem can no longer be masked. Selfishness and conspiracy theories have robbed us of our crisis-response ability. The simple act of wearing a mask to limit the spread of a novel virus is too much for some of us to bear. It’s this lack of responsibility that makes addressing the climate crisis a nightmare.

Ironically, many of the self-proclaimed patriots and constitutional scholars being forced by some deep-state operative to wear a mask during a global pandemic whine that breathing their own carbon dioxide is making them unhealthy. Surgeons and dental hygienists should be notified immediately.

Many likely “learned” about the dangers of mask wearing from a discredited scientist who was featured in a video that has since been removed from social-media platforms, because even the country’s biggest purveyors of hate and lies knew the message was garbage.

Unfortunately, as the climate crisis has taught us, it’s more convenient to believe a lone wolf who spews your beliefs than consensus opinion that would require you to acknowledge the problem. Take hydroxychloroquine because an elected conman pushes it. Listen to the rogue scientist or meteorologist who tells you that the climate crisis is a hoax. Their cover masks the problem. No reason to change your behavior. Besides, the coronavirus mostly kills old people and the already sick, and future generations will pay for the climate crisis.

In the case of the latter, those who study the climate and natural world are lying to strike it rich, because that is the message the fossil-fuel industry funds. The same logic would have you believe doctors, not the tobacco industry, are lying about the dangers of smoking.

As for COVID-19, infectious-diseases experts can’t be trusted because they are part of some deep-state effort to undermine the stable genius of a serial liar.

The result of this growing level of madness has left the United States with the most COVID-19 deaths on the planet, and with little hope we can address the climate crisis in any meaningful way, much less lead a worldwide effort.

The climate crisis demands urgent action now. Divest from fossil fuels. Decarbonize the heating and transportation sectors significantly. Adhere to the guidance in reams of studies and reports, much of them taxpayer funded, that outline smart growth and best practices for mitigating the impacts of global warming. (For example, Rhode Island’s Executive Climate Change Coordinating Council doesn’t really do what is defined in the law that created it nearly six years ago and the Ocean State routinely ignores the advice of experts.)

Discuss, at the very least, the planet’s human carrying capacity. Consume less. Stop abusing people and the planet for profit. Embrace science and keep up with its advancements. Stop celebrating minimal efforts that ignore the larger, much-more dire picture. Talk less about what needs to be done and just do it. Protect the environment.

Allowing the climate crisis to wash over us isn’t an option.

Frank Carini is the ecoRI News editor.

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  1. Hear, Hear!!

    "Fiddling while Rome burns" is an over-used but still apt expression. Debating cap & trade vs carbon pricing ad nauseam needs to give way to a more pure pragmatism: how can we implement practices that will work as effectively as possible while preserving human welfare (not the status of the wealthy). The luxury of time is an illusion & fuels the delusion that we are not in dire straits due to much more than Covid-19…

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