Dear Mr. Talbott — does it make you feel good to mock a person for drawing attention to human-caused global warming? Your generation drove cars without catalytic converters that got 12 miles to the gallon, used refrigerators that used R12 gas, and painted homes with lead-based paint. Those were but a few dark aspects of what you might think of as “the good old days.”
Science and concerned people reacted to the adverse effects that these things had on our environment and health, and worked to change and prevent these human-invented and caused problems. It is not a person’s fault to bring an awareness of global warming to public attention, whether or not it is caused by humans.
Mr. Talbott, I do drive a car and do fly in airplanes; however, it is not without an awareness that parking garages, while costing more in the short term, also take up less of a foot print. Or that the roof of a parking garage could be planted with CO2-consuming, food-producing plants or parks, or that ground level parking lots could be covered in solar cells keeping the cars and pedestrians below them in the shade or free from snow while also producing electricity. They would be more costly to build in the short term but better for all concerned in the long term. Ask yourself which is better for future generations: to dwell on the past, think in the short term, or plan for the future?
Mr. Talbott I have read your many columns and letters over the years. I respect your reminiscence of the past; however, a future also awaits us. An awareness of the problems that we face — many if not most of which were caused by our shortsightedness — should not be denigrated. An expectation of future generations to create solutions for problems that we caused seems unreasonable, and yet to some degree this generation is facing problems created by generations past as best we can, even when presented with ridicule.