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It’s time we let some facts get in way of climate-change deniers

Would you rather entrust the future of the planet to people such as Geoffrey Hargreaves, curator of the National Ice Core Laboratory in Lakewood, Colo, or the inhabitants of Capitol Hill? The lab, using a wide range of data, from ice cores to trace gas analysis and other methods, is attempting to measure the past and present so they can better model the near and distant future of our planet. Congress, meanwhile, relies on the old-fashioned political wind test.
Would you rather entrust the future of the planet to people such as Geoffrey Hargreaves, curator of the National Ice Core Laboratory in Lakewood, Colo, or the inhabitants of Capitol Hill? The lab, using a wide range of data, from ice cores to trace gas analysis and other methods, is attempting to measure the past and present so they can better model the near and distant future of our planet. Congress, meanwhile, relies on the old-fashioned political wind test. AP

I wonder what the world will look like when our elected officials finally “get it.”

I’ll know they get it when I get a press release from one of our congress members saying something’s going on with the climate and we have to fix it now.

I’m not waiting by the mailbox.

I’m not sure what it will take. I just watched a YouTube video. A scientist in Alaska and her cohorts were poking holes in the ice, holding a lighter over the hole and igniting a flame that shot high above their heads.

The conclusion: The permafrost is melting and creating methane that is being trapped in frozen bubbles that can be popped and ignited.

Call it semi-permafrost, I guess.

I would think that would be alarming. But the video was made in 2010, so I guess it wasn’t. And every day it gets worse.

The reaction here would probably be along the lines of: “Where can I get me some of them bubbles? The kid’s birthday is coming up.”

Which is why we have leaders. I’m not so disappointed that Average Joe and Josephine doesn’t care about climate change. It’s not as easy or sexy a subject as, say, “The Bachelorette.”

Speaking of reality shows, not even the two prospective leaders of the free world injected climate change into the presidential debate. Of course, they weren’t asked. But they are pretty adept at answering questions that weren’t asked.

So that one is on Hillary Clinton, who has a climate-change policy and plans, and not so much on Donald Trump, who once tweeted climate change is just a Chinese hoax.

And that lets lesser elected officials off the hook. People like Sen. Roger Wicker, the only senator to vote against an amendment that said “climate change is real and not a hoax.”

It’s against that backdrop a group of people are trying to change people’s minds one small meeting at a time. City officials. Students. Anyone willing to listen. They are armed with facts and a solution — a carbon fee and dividend.

And they’ll be taking their case into the belly of the beast Nov. 14-15 with a Congressional Education Day in Washington.

“What we’d like all these (congress members) to do is, instead of being obviously opposed to climate change legislation and fighting it,” said Bill Curtis, leader of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Chapter of the Citizens’ Climate Lobby said, “if they would just take a neutral role and influence other congressmen to take a more active role, that would be a step forward.”

Peter Bryn is conservative coordinator and Houston Central chapter leader of the Citizens’ Climate Lobby. He was leading a tour, about 64 events, across the Gulf South, trying to enlist people in the cause. The tour stopped Sept. 12 at USM Gulf Park in Long Beach.

“The ideal outcome is somebody or a few people hold up their hands and say, ‘We’ve go to (start a chapter) here,’” said Bryn, who gave up a job as an Exxon engineer to join. “Even if that doesn’t happen, you start planting seeds. In places where we do have people who are already interested, this has been a shot in the arm. It has pushed them to make calls they wouldn’t have made before.”

If you aren’t closed-minded — even if you’re skeptical — it won’t cost you anything to check them out. You already have an internet connection so what have you got to lose — missing out on the next Honey Boo Boo?

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