Richmond Times-Dispatch Weekend

‘Climate’ writer negates claims of second writer



The April 14 Letter to the Editor headlined “Volcanoes, fire create much uncontroll­able CO2” is factually incorrect and extremely pessimisti­c. The writer implies we should do nothing. He is correct that volcanoes contribute carbon dioxide and cannot be controlled. On the other hand, volcanoes contribute about 1% of the total carbon dioxide annually emitted.

It is important to note that the frequency and the extent of wildfires both are directly related to global warming.

As noted in the April 10 article in the Richmond TimesDispa­tch, “Carbon dioxide spikes to critical new record,” we have reached more than

420 parts per million (ppm) in the atmosphere compared to around 278 ppm in preindustr­ial days.

Very little of that increase is from volcanoes or wildfires. Virtually all of it is from burning fossil fuels. Here are the facts: The amount of CO2 emitted by the United States annually is around 5 billion tons. China annually emits more than 10 billion tons. The world annually emits around 51 billion tons.

As I recommende­d in my original letter, read Bill Gates’ book, “How to Avoid a Climate Disaster.” It brings context and perspectiv­e to this critical issue. We are past the point of ignoring this situation.



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