I was disappointed that “Maine may benefit from a warming Arctic, Angus King says” was the headline chosen about a conversation King had with students about the effects climate change will have on Maine (Feb. 5).

The article itself states “there’s no question that the climate crisis that’s making it (ice free shipping lanes) possible offers far more downside than whatever gains it makes possible.” So to put emphasis on any alleged benefits is misleading and hurts efforts to raise awareness about the deadly seriousness of the climate crisis. Most tragedies have some grim silver lining, but it’s not appropriate to gloat about your inheritance at your parent’s funeral or to talk about the better view after your neighbor’s house burns down. A melting arctic is an extinction level catastrophe for huge numbers of species and will drown many coastal communities across the world.

“King said melting glaciers in Greenland and Antarctica will likely cause sea levels to rise by 6 feet or more by the end of the century unless something unexpected happens.”

Could that unexpected thing be our leaders finally taking the climate crisis seriously and passing aggressive legislation that preserves the health of our planet for future generations? Or will we continue to talk cheerily about short-term profit and the ease of crushing local manufacturers with boat loads of cheap imported goods, while building impressive houses for the wealthy few who are able to control the shipping routes and capitalize on other’s misfortune?

When it comes to the climate, it’s not enough to encourage the next generation to do better; we are the ones that need to do better now.

 

Adam Turner

Augusta

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