Letters to the Editor: Marshfield students write in on global warming, tar sands, and Foxconn
Please consider this letter concerning the topic of global warming. As you may know global warming is the long-term rise in the average temperature of the Earth’s climate system, an aspect of climate change shown by temperature measurements and by multiple effects of the warming. Some view this as a political issue, others view this as a religious issue, but few actually attempt to educate themselves on the actual topic at hand, the fact that our planet that we have come to know is changing.
Earth is changing for the worst and many people are still caught up on the idea that global warming is a left wing conspiracy theory; when in reality this subject is truly an incredibly dire situation.
By the year 2035, our planet is said to reach the point of no return; the ocean will be too warm for fish to thrive, the arctic will no longer be cold enough to support the life of its species that call this place home, and my generation will have to raise our children in a world lacking such creatures previous generations didn’t adore.
‘The United Nations Secretary-General is forecasting ‘total disaster’ if global warming is not halted.’, with headlines like this how can some still believe that this is just a political conspiracy theory? How can people be so closed minded as to not go through a researching process of finding their results?
In conclusion, I ask you and everyone reading this to please research such an issue before preaching a message that could endanger our planet’s future.
My family’s property is home to an 80 foot wide stretch of land containing three pipes carrying crude oil and one pipe carrying toxic chemicals allowing dense tar sands oil to flow through the pipe. 1.9 million barrels of oil are being pushed under our property daily by Enbridge, a Canadian pipeline company.
The oil running through our property isn’t the black, sleek oil people most often think of, it’s thick sand mixed with small percentages of oil. Converting tar sands to usable oil causes large amounts of greenhouse gases to be emitted into the atmosphere, increasing the effects of global warming. To obtain these tar sands, the oil companies must cut down the boreal forest in order to mine the deposits of oil, producing large amounts of carbon dioxide and greenhouse gases, further increasing the effects of global warming. Deforestation leads to increased amounts of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, because there are fewer trees to absorb greenhouse gasses.
Leaks from the pipes can also cause dangerous chemicals and oil to contaminate local wells and drinking water. A spill actually occurred in 2010 on our neighbors’ property leading them to move out of their house in fear of contaminated well water.
I’m concerned about the environmental problems that Enbridge and the oil companies are modeling for the future. “Life takes energy” is Enbridge’s slogan, and yes, today’s modern life takes energy, but we should be investing more money and technology into producing reliable renewable energy sources instead of using non-renewable, polluting fossil fuels. The world’s climate is changing, so should we. Oil will only last for so long— the resources there now are decreasing in supply.
Think of the kids now and the children who come after; they shouldn’t have to deal with the problems we create today.
State legislators are elected to represent local interests. When assemblymen representing Central and Northern Wisconsin voted on the Foxconn $3 billion tax incentives in 2017, they did so mainly along party lines. Two years later, the Foxconn promise has not panned out, with lowered predictions for job creation and an attempt by Foxconn to renegotiate tax credits. Yet homeowners have been evicted in Mount Pleasant, and pollution standards have been waived with respect to air and water quality.
Meanwhile, road construction projects in our part of the state have been affected by preparation for the Foxconn factory, in terms of state budget allocation and delays in availability of workers for repairs north of HWY 21, according to reports from the Legislature’s budget office and state engineers.
If assemblymen are willing to work cooperatively with Governor Evers, it is not too late to revisit the Foxconn deal to prevent further harm to residents and taxpayers in Central and Northern Wisconsin.
The origins of the deal were likely connected to the 2018 Governor’s election, but the involvement of politics is still not over: now, Foxconn Technology Group chairman Terry Gou is running for president of Taiwan. Gou met President Trump at the White House on May 1, amid rising trade tensions between the US and mainland China. If Foxconn is juggling financial gain, US partisan loyalties, and Taiwanese political ambitions as its motivations, there is no room for the interests of Wisconsinites.
We need our legislators stand up for constituent priorities instead of falling for the false promises of foreign corporations.
Marshfield High School