- Feds ask judge to impose $6.5 million punishment for Cape surgeon (12/7/17)9
- Harbor Freight Tools plans to move ahead with Cape Girardeau store (12/5/17)2
- Light and music show: Jackson family goes high-tech with Christmas display (12/11/17)
- Former Wimpy's Drive-In owner Freeman Lewis dies (12/9/17)2
- Makeover at the movies: Transformation complete inside Cape theater (12/8/17)4
- Sugarfire Cape barbecue restaurant to open June 2018 (12/7/17)
- Jury convicts Scott City man who confessed to murder; girlfriend's testimony corroborates confession (12/9/17)
- Pedestrian struck on Broadway (12/11/17)4
- Business Notebook: Yule Log Cabin gets home feel honestly (12/4/17)
- Fruitland Army veteran spends weeks helping in ravaged Puerto Rico (12/5/17)2
Climate change: Safe, not sorry
Anyone following the climate change issue should know that the scientific consensus is as follows: That climate change is happening is unequivocal. Surely there can be no conscious individual who doubts this any longer. In terms of the cause, the consensus is that there is greater than a 90 percent probability that human activities are a significant contributor. This is what the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reported in 2007. There has since been no research undermining that assessment.
If someone were diagnosed with cancer and sought further opinion -- as is reasonable -- and were advised that the probability of cancer is greater than 90 percent, he or she would have every right to seek further opinion and keep seeking it until finding one acceptable individual who says he or she is fine. He or she would have every right to reject the trained experts and accept the preferred advice. After all, if they die, he or she alone plus their friends and family suffer.
In the case of climate change, however, we are dealing with the future of life on the planet as we know it. If we reduce greenhouse gases and find they are not the cause, the worst case is we have a cleaner atmosphere. On the other hand, if we do nothing and just seek more research, we may reach the point of no return when our planetary life support system is totally devastated. In both cases, most folks would rather be safe than sorry. This reflects sanity, not politics.
ALAN JOURNET, Cape Girardeau