Time for PM Harper to act

Finally some good news, good news for everyone, but particularly for generations yet to come: After decades of foot dragging and oscillating, the government of the United States, officially, unequivocally, in clean print, acknowledged that greenhouse gases are harmful to humans.

Finally some good news, good news for everyone, but particularly for generations yet to come: After decades of foot dragging and oscillating, the government of the United States, officially, unequivocally, in clean print, acknowledged that greenhouse gases are harmful to humans. The announcement by the EPA, Environment Protection Agency, which operates directly under President Barack Obama’s authority, paves the way for introduction of measures even if the conservatives and sceptics in the US Congress keep trying to block them.

And what of it to us?

Well, maybe now, our Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who has been so diligently following the lead of the U.S government in every major international issue, can take the cue from Mr. Obama and do something about Canada’s status as one industrial power on the globe whose carbon emissions keep rising at a level unmatched by any other country.

Quite auspiciously, the announcement by the EPA came on the same day as representatives from more than 190 nations gathered in the Danish capital Copenhagen to discuss how to stop global warming.

Reading these lines in central Alberta, where the temperature has been well below freezing for several days now could lead to a lot of dismissive thoughts and

remarks regarding the global warming.

The sudden onslaught of harsh winter weather with an almost unprecedented amount of white stuff might have made many people angry.

But let’s be fair: Here we are talking about a frontal system that will most probably leave the area within a week, leading to warmer temperatures.

But the danger of global warming has been growing so fast that we might be too late to save our planet and the human race if we give in to the greed of the industries preying on fossil fuels for hefty profits.

The debate is no longer political or economic, it is scientific; and irrefutable evidence says that concentration of carbon dioxide in the air we breath has risen from 280 parts per million at the beginning of 19th century to 390 today, and we have only a margin of 60 parts per million left to take action to prevent any further increase.

If we go ahead and use that margin to bring the concentration to 450, we will be starting a chain reaction that will begin with a two degree rise in the annual average temperatures, followed by increased desertification, drying up of at least some lakes and rivers while at same time flooding of coastal agricultural land by rising sea levels, leading to food shortages and possibly wars.

Allowing blurred vision caused by heavy snowfall to turn into permanent myopia on such a vital issue like global warming could well lead to an error for which future generations will have to pay.

— Mustafa Eric