EDITOR: The debate on climate change attracts views covering the gamut of extremes. Don't forget to consider issues that fall between both sides of the argument.
All parties involved in the debate agree that climate is changing, with new record temperatures, more or fewer storms and variation in rainfall amounts (floods or droughts). This has been verified by satellite, NASA and NOAA, ice core samples, tree growth rings and more through hundreds of years.
All parties agree that carbon dioxide levels are rising.
What is seldom mentioned by most proponents is that carbon dioxide, water, mineral matter, sunlight and heat are necessary for plant life and we in turn are dependent on plants to give us the oxygen and food we must have to survive. Higher temperatures, within limits, increase plant growth.
Other factors affect earth's temperature, such as methane, water vapor and the long-term natural variability of weather.
The risk in trying to slow down certain changes such as carbon dioxide increases is that we are engaging in a variety of actions that are costing all of us more for the things we need, especially energy. Australia has found out that as a result of their carbon tax program, costs went up for the average family without any perceived benefit, and it is abandoning its efforts.
We shouldn't be panicked by climate change into doing anything radical with our energy sources until we have proper facts on what proposed changes will cost and what their short- and long-term benefits will be. Economical clean energy is a clear positive, but we have a long way to go.
Norman F. Deffner,
town of Maine