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Deserves discussion

Written by Rosa Colucci on .

Jack Kelly's recent column on climate change ("Globull Warming," Feb. 14) was an amateurish attempt to dismiss any serious discussion of climate change issues. For justification of his arguments he attacks the global warming positions of a talk show host, a popular novelist and Robert Kennedy Jr. These people have no scientific credentials, so Mr. Kelly uses them as simple strawmen, so easy to knock down. While Robert Kennedy might have believed it would never snow in Washington, D.C., again, I doubt any serious climate scientist would make that claim. Oh, but it is so popular to be anti-intellectual these days.

What I would like to see out of Mr. Kelly and all other responsible journalists is an honest discussion of facts. And the most important fact is that no future is certain. We are dealing with probabilities. Climate scientists can't be certain of their models, and their predictions may not come to pass.

Alternatively, Mr. Kelly cannot be certain in any scientific sense that global climate change is not occurring. So why not an intelligent discussion of the potential impact of these two scenarios, including how our action (or inaction) might change the risks associated with each? Spending money to reduce dependency on fossil fuels offers some positive benefits, even if climate change is not occurring. Alternatively, what level of risk are we willing to take as a society to feel justified in continuing the "drill, baby, drill" mentality?

These are tough questions to answer, and to do so requires scientific data, risk analysis and an honest judgment of the facts. But this would require an intellectual discussion, and Jack Kelly knows where his popularity lies.

 

KEVIN ELSKEN
Upper St. Clair

 

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