Letters

Letters 10-20-2014

Doctor Dan? After several email conversations with Rep. Benishek, he has confirmed that he doesn’t have a clue of what he does. Here’s why...

In Favor Of Our Parks [Traverse] City Proposal 1 is a creative way to improve our city parks without using our tax dollars. By using a small portion of our oil and gas royalties from the Brown Bridge Trust Fund, our parks can be improved for our children and grandchildren.

From January 1970 Popular Mechanics: “Drastic climate changes will occur within the next 50 years if the use of fossil fuels keeps rising at current rates.” That warning comes from Eugene K. Peterson of the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management.

Newcomers Might Leave: Recently we had guests from India who came over as students with the plan to stay in America. He has a master’s degree in engineering and she is doing her residency in Chicago and plans to specialize in oncology. They talked very candidly about American politics and said that after observing...

Someone Is You: On Sept 21, I joined the 400,000 who took to the streets of New York in the People’s Climate March, followed by a UN Climate Summit and many speeches. On October 13, the Pentagon issued a report calling climate change a significant threat to national security requiring immediate action. How do we move from marches, speeches and reports to meaningful work on this problem? In NYC I read a sign with a simple answer...

Necessary To Pay: Last fall, Grand Traverse voters authorized a new tax to fix roads. It is good, it is necessary.

The Real Reasons for Wolf Hunt: I have really been surprised that no one has been commenting on the true reason for the wolf hunt. All this effort has not been expended so 23 wolves can be killed each year. Instead this manufactured controversy about the wolf hunt has been very carefully crafted to get Proposal 14-2 passed.

Home · Articles · News · Other Opinions · October 24: Your day to...
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October 24: Your day to speak out about climate change

Hans Voss - October 19th, 2009
October 24: Your Day to
Speak Out on Climate Change

By Hans Voss 10/19/09

How would you like to be part of what looks to be the biggest day of worldwide environmental action in history?
It happens Saturday, October 24 and Traverse City is an important part of this global event called the International Day of Climate Action. Locally, it starts at 1 p.m. at the Open Space and later moves to the Traverse City Opera House. We’ll gather for a huge group photo that will be beamed to Times Square and across the world.
It’s all meant to grab the attention of world leaders as they prepare to go to Copenhagen, Denmark in December to negotiate a new international climate treaty. And the climate day action seems to be working; at last check, there were 2,376 events planned in more than 153 countries for Saturday.
It should be a “no-brainer” to get people involved, right?
Not really. Most people understand that climate change is real and dangerous, but it isn’t at the top of many priority lists. We’ve got plenty to worry about already: the economic reality of holding on to our jobs and paying the bills, the daily responsibilities of making dinner, cleaning the house, and helping kids with homework. And most of us are already squeezing in time to support church activities, volunteer at the school, or participate in community efforts.
But if there was ever a moment to get involved in the climate change debate, this is it. Political forces around the world are converging for action now, and some of them are real game changers.
In December, President Obama and other world leaders will meet in Copenhagen to set international targets and strategies. What’s different now from the failed negotiations of Kyoto (which the U.S. formally pulled out of in 2001) is that America is finally poised to lead.
Earlier this year the U.S. House of Representatives took an important step by passing a domestic climate bill, there’s strong leadership in the Senate, and Obama has spoken boldly about the urgency of the moment and pledged to take a leadership role on the international stage.
So, why should a bunch of people in northwest Michigan get involved?
As it turns out, curbing climate changes means accelerating the nascent clean-energy economy—and that is also the best way to restart Michigan’s stalled manufacturing economy and grow tens of thousands of permanent, well-paying jobs here.
This is no pie-in-the-sky stuff. Michigan already has it going on, as far as green manufacturing. Last month, for example, a state agency last month counted more than 8,000 construction workers now building or expanding clean-energy manufacturing facilities in the state.
In August, Michigan snagged most of the federal government’s battery technology development grants--$1.35 billion!—and closed a deal to convert an idled auto plant in Wixom into a solar panel and battery factory employing 4,000 workers.
Back in May, another state study found that Michigan’s green sector now employs more than 100,000 people and that the only industrial sector in the state showing growth was its green energy sector, including green energy manufacturing.
And the Granholm administration will tell you that they are just getting started on updating the state’s economy for the 21st century. They rightly believe that Michigan can be a world leader in clean-energy manufacturing.
And while pushing clean energy creates real economic opportunity, it also helps to avoid the consequences of climate change. Michigan’s average temperature has already increased by 1.5?F since the middle of the last century and will increase another 5?F degrees by 2060 if nothing is done about carbon emissions. That would make Michigan feel a lot like Arkansas in the summer.
That may sound nice on the kind frosty mornings we’ve had lately, but University of Michigan researchers say such temperatures could drop Great Lakes water levels by eight feet by 2100. Just think of the huge economic costs to Great Lakes boating, fishing, and shipping, and the serious environmental consequences of disappearing shoreline wetlands and shrinking Great Lakes food chains.
In the coming months our two U.S. senators, Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow, both of whom are solid environmental leaders, will vote on the federal climate bill; they’ll vote on the climate treaty that comes out of Copenhagen, too. No matter how supportive Levin and Stabenow are, they need to hear from us if they are going to stand up to the resistance from the oil and coal lobbies.
.Your voice really can make a difference. And if those of us in Northern Michigan join together, our collective voice can have an even bigger effect.
Will being a climate change advocate add another piece to your already busy life? Yeah, but not much.
All you need to do is come on out to the Traverse City Open Space at 1 p.m. on October 24 and take a few minutes to write a letter, send an email, or make a phone call. Spend a couple hours on this crucial cause. The next generations will thank you.
For a lot more information see www.tc350.org.

Hans Voss is the executive director of the Michigan Land Use Institute, a Traverse City-based advocacy organization advancing programs on the environment, community planning, and agriculture designed to support Michigan’s economic prosperity. More information at www.mlui.org .

--
This message has been scanned for viruses and
dangerous content by MailScanner, and is
believed to be clean.October 24: Your Day to
Speak Out on Climate Change

By Hans Voss

How would you like to be part of what looks to be the biggest day of worldwide environmental action in history?
It happens Saturday, October 24 and Traverse City is an important part of this global event called the International Day of Climate Action. Locally, it starts at 1 p.m. at the Open Space and later moves to the Traverse City Opera House. We’ll gather for a huge group photo that will be beamed to Times Square and across the world.
It’s all meant to grab the attention of world leaders as they prepare to go to Copenhagen, Denmark in December to negotiate a new international climate treaty. And the climate day action seems to be working; at last check, there were 2,376 events planned in more than 153 countries for Saturday.
It should be a “no-brainer” to get people involved, right?
Not really. Most people understand that climate change is real and dangerous, but it isn’t at the top of many priority lists. We’ve got plenty to worry about already: the economic reality of holding on to our jobs and paying the bills, the daily responsibilities of making dinner, cleaning the house, and helping kids with homework. And most of us are already squeezing in time to support church activities, volunteer at the school, or participate in community efforts.
But if there was ever a moment to get involved in the climate change debate, this is it. Political forces around the world are converging for action now, and some of them are real game changers.
In December, President Obama and other world leaders will meet in Copenhagen to set international targets and strategies. What’s different now from the failed negotiations of Kyoto (which the U.S. formally pulled out of in 2001) is that America is finally poised to lead.
Earlier this year the U.S. House of Representatives took an important step by passing a domestic climate bill, there’s strong leadership in the Senate, and Obama has spoken boldly about the urgency of the moment and pledged to take a leadership role on the international stage.
So, why should a bunch of people in northwest Michigan get involved?
As it turns out, curbing climate changes means accelerating the nascent clean-energy economy—and that is also the best way to restart Michigan’s stalled manufacturing economy and grow tens of thousands of permanent, well-paying jobs here.
This is no pie-in-the-sky stuff. Michigan already has it going on, as far as green manufacturing. Last month, for example, a state agency last month counted more than 8,000 construction workers now building or expanding clean-energy manufacturing facilities in the state.
In August, Michigan snagged most of the federal government’s battery technology development grants--$1.35 billion!—and closed a deal to convert an idled auto plant in Wixom into a solar panel and battery factory employing 4,000 workers.
Back in May, another state study found that Michigan’s green sector now employs more than 100,000 people and that the only industrial sector in the state showing growth was its green energy sector, including green energy manufacturing.
And the Granholm administration will tell you that they are just getting started on updating the state’s economy for the 21st century. They rightly believe that Michigan can be a world leader in clean-energy manufacturing.
And while pushing clean energy creates real economic opportunity, it also helps to avoid the consequences of climate change. Michigan’s average temperature has already increased by 1.5?F since the middle of the last century and will increase another 5?F degrees by 2060 if nothing is done about carbon emissions. That would make Michigan feel a lot like Arkansas in the summer.
That may sound nice on the kind frosty mornings we’ve had lately, but University of Michigan researchers say such temperatures could drop Great Lakes water levels by eight feet by 2100. Just think of the huge economic costs to Great Lakes boating, fishing, and shipping, and the serious environmental consequences of disappearing shoreline wetlands and shrinking Great Lakes food chains.
In the coming months our two U.S. senators, Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow, both of whom are solid environmental leaders, will vote on the federal climate bill; they’ll vote on the climate treaty that comes out of Copenhagen, too. No matter how supportive Levin and Stabenow are, they need to hear from us if they are going to stand up to the resistance from the oil and coal lobbies.
.Your voice really can make a difference. And if those of us in Northern Michigan join together, our collective voice can have an even bigger effect.
Will being a climate change advocate add another piece to your already busy life? Yeah, but not much.
All you need to do is come on out to the Traverse City Open Space at 1 p.m. on October 24 and take a few minutes to write a letter, send an email, or make a phone call. Spend a couple hours on this crucial cause. The next generations will thank you.
For a lot more information see www.tc350.org.

Hans Voss is the executive director of the Michigan Land Use Institute, a Traverse City-based advocacy organization advancing programs on the environment, community planning, and agriculture designed to support Michigan’s economic prosperity. More information at www.mlui.org .

 
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