Positives from the past year

We’ve had much to be thankful for and hopeful about since Thanksgiving.

The White House released the fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4), a report which leaves no doubt about the reality and dangers of climate change — and the role humans have in causing it. Though released on Black Friday, the NCA4 caught the media’s eye: they reported extensively on it, drawing attention to its warnings about disrupting the delicate balance of God’s creation.

The Eau Claire City Council followed with two positive decisions: a $180,000 grant to build a Climate Action Plan to achieve 100 percent clean energy for our city by 2050 and passed a resolution urging Congress to adopt a carbon fee and dividend policy (following the lead of Eau Claire County, which passed such a resolution in June). On the same day, at the national level, three Democrats and two Republicans introduced a bipartisan bill (H.R. 7173): the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act. A third Republican, Rep. Dave Trott, R-Mich., joined them. I asked Rep. Ron Kind to support the bill, and urge you reading this to ask your member of Congress to support it too.

These acts were done by people working together beyond party affiliation because they sought the greater good. They prove cooperation is possible in finding a solution to climate change which will lead to great advances for us all: better health by reducing pollution; a stronger economy and tens of thousands of new jobs in renewable energy; and a reduction in climate refugees and future conflicts over oil, clean water and arable land.

Thank you, City Council, for leading Wisconsin communities forward to create a healthier environment by promoting renewable energy, and thank you, sponsors of H.R. 7173. You give me hope.

Rev. David Huber

Eau Claire

Concerns mark start of 2019

Looking back on 2018, I’m thankful for the positive effects of the many good things accomplished. Unfortunately, moral and political garbage that also littered much of that cultural landscape threatens to also contaminate 2019.

The very fabric of the United States is straining at the seams, its boundaries dangerously vulnerable. For the sake of political advantage, law breakers are protected and law-abiding citizens taken advantage of, as laws are either ignored or manipulated to instead of properly protect, actually cause the prevention of security.

Contradictions abound. A mathematical type of perversion is becoming the norm, ignoring the obvious when things don’t reasonably add up, as is the use of meth, cooking up any excuse for checking out from reality and responsibility. There is more social media, cellphones, headphones and TV, and less honest, real and meaningful communication.

Choices between what is good or bad are at extreme odds. Choosing “organic” and “natural” is widely popular, suggesting a wise and healthy lifestyle is a priority, yet the choice to succumb to drugs, alcohol and sexual abuse is also rampant.

Climate change as the leading looming threat to the destruction of “sustainable” life is passionately promoted on one hand, while the unfeeling destruction of innocent little human beings in the womb, 3,000 per day, is fanatically defended as a healthy lifestyle choice on the other.

In the full spectrum of public education, proven cultural guidelines are purposely being erased or replaced. Instead of teaching respect for the flag and the America it represents, children are being led to actively resist authority, religion, parents and even their own DNA.

If this destructive trend is complacently allowed to continue, ATIFA’s chant, “No borders, no wall, no USA at all,” will become a sad reality.

Norma Koxlien

Eau Claire

Climate remains a top worry

The U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has issued a warning of unprecedented seriousness: We are quickly reaching the point of no return in averting world-wide climate catastrophe if we fail to act.

The U.N. report, requested as a part of the 2015 Paris Accord, strongly cautions that exceeding a global temperature rise of 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) over pre-industrial levels would make parts of the world uninhabitable and threaten civilized order with devastating weather events and destabilizing mass human migrations.

The IPCC report follows a long string of similar, increasingly urgent warnings. We can hope that this one is the wake-up call that shakes us out of our complacency.

We need to hold every office-holder accountable on the issue of climate change. An invaluable resource is the League of Conservation Voters’ ratings of legislators on environmental issues. In 2017 the LCV gave Sen. Tammy Baldwin a 100 percent positive rating and Sen. Ron Johnson a 0.

The IPCC says the window for meaningful action is quickly closing, with real-world effects of climate change outpacing the theoretical models climate scientists have worked with for years.

Time is not on the side of a nation that ignores the clear signs of climate catastrophe ahead.

Thomas Smith

River Falls