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Climate change always the issue

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Fort McMurray, Alta., has massive capacity for fossil fuel extraction.

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Fort McMurray, Alta., has massive capacity for fossil fuel extraction.

The Dec. 21 editorial Oil politics requires some grease states that "the issue is not climate change." Get serious. Whenever we discuss fossil fuels, climate change is the issue.

The burning of oil and other fossil fuels is causing the Earth's climate to change to the extent that someday it will no longer support human life.

In 2011, the governments of the world gave $500 billion in subsidies to the fossil fuel industry, which consists of some of the richest companies in history. As a result, last year, 2012, the global community put a record amount of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. It's time for politicians to get serious and put a gradually increasing tax on carbon until it is priced out of the market, as recommended by climate scientists such as James Hansen.

There is more oil in the Alberta tarsands than all the oil that has been extracted to date worldwide, and there is no room in the atmosphere to safely absorb the emissions it will create. For the sake of future generations, it is time to get serious and start talking about how to leave this resource in the ground and not how to exploit it.

 

Skip Martin

Flin Flon

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 27, 2013 A12

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