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Climate change is here

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Dear Editor:

Climate change is here now. For Colorado that means impacts to our forests, our farms, our snow, and our water supplies. It means more extreme heat days and more insects to bug us. As the monsoons kick in we hope not to witness the damage the super-charged hydrological cycle can bring with devastating floods, like those that hit the Front Range several years ago.

Now a new report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows the seriousness of our plight. NOAA's report is a sort of annual climate check-up, with contributions from hundreds of scientists around the globe. And in addition to 2016 being the hottest year on record, sea levels and greenhouse gases also reached record highs, as global sea ice approached its record low.

Trump's EPA administrator Scott Pruitt may prefer to deny climate change and undermine the Clean Air Act to court big-money polluters but American voters ought not to put up with it. We need to send a message to Pruitt and his boss in the White House that we demand climate action, and that we will act to defend sound climate policy.

Americans didn't vote for a president who would put polluters ahead of the public. And Colorado certainly does not support sacrificing our clean air and healthy environment to benefit corporate greed. So, our congressional delegation would do well to note: We expect representatives that stand up for the environment even if that means standing up to Mr. Trump. Polished words at prudent moments aren't enough. The time to act is here.

Pete Kolbenschlag
Paonia

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