Letter: Biden should declare climate emergency


Many of us know the “boiling frog” metaphor in which a frog thrown into boiling water will jump out, but a frog placed into tepid water will remain even as the temperature is gradually increased to a lethal boil. Climate change is a decades-long problem, but our boil is quickly approaching.

We are amid an urgent, ever-growing climate crisis. Washington state is burning, Canada is burning and Maui has been burning. Hurricanes, droughts, floods and wildfires are happening with increasing frequency. The science is clear: Climate change is real and caused by human activity.

President Biden has the power to declare a climate emergency and use executive authority to take action to address this emergency. Our lawmakers need to put a price on carbon emissions that will move the nation toward renewable energy. Our government can invest in clean power, create jobs, and protect communities from the worst effects of climate change.

Some say that we can’t afford to transition to a green economy, but they overwhelmingly fail to consider the cost of not doing so. What will it cost to rebuild Lahaina? What do droughts cost farmers? What does recovery from a hurricane cost? Can we put a price on lives lost? How long will it be before our economy becomes seriously threatened? The cost of not acting is incalculable.

Please urge President Biden to declare a climate emergency and urge our members of Congress to support every means possible to address global warming.

Mark Rohde