Climate change editorial

This is an editorial submitted by friend of the network Dr Fenichel in response to a piece published by a local south jersey newspaper.

On 6/12/2019 the Press published an editorial “Good News- Jersey Shore will still be habitable in 2100.”

It began with their critical reaction to an opinion company, 24/7 Wall St concerning their list of “American cities that will soon be underwater”. Ironically what seemed to trouble the Press was “It was put together by 2 of its editors, who used the worst imaginable outcomes from a study by … the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS).” The UCS report laid out 3 scenarios:

  1. High risk assumes rapid sheet loss and projects a 6.6’ sea level rise by the end of the century.
  2. The intermediate scenario assumes a moderate rate of ice sheet loss resulting in 4’ rise by 2100.
  3. The Low scenario assumes curtailed warming and sea level rise driven primarily by ocean warming with little contribution of ice loss and projects a sea level rise of 1.6’ by 2100.

Why the Press’ editorial did not look to the primary source, the UCS report’s conclusion and chose to attack 24/7 Wall St alleged claim of a 6.6’ sea level rise almost suggests an intention to minimize the seriousness of sea level rise.

The editorial continues its dismissive tone concerning the Climate Crisis: “Many seem to believe the potential harms of a changing climate must be portrayed as fearfully as possible to produce sufficient support for efforts to mitigate them and reduce the human component of warming. This backfires when people see they’re being manipulated and increase their skepticism about climate science.”

It thus seems fair to wonder what is the agenda of the Press regarding its support for the proposed SJ Gas pipeline through the pinelands? Why is the Press seeing the impending Climate crisis through rose colored glasses? Could it have anything to do with the paper’s ownership’s investments in fossil fuels?

In closing a report published on 6/18/19 by scientists at the University of Alaska.

The headline, “Scientists shocked by Arctic permafrost thawing 70 years before predicted.”

This looks potentially significant in creating the high-risk scenario, 6.6’.

                                                                                Steven Fenichel, MD

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