LETTERS: Harris’ letter a lot of hot air

Two readers tell us that Tom Harris is paid by the fossil fuel industry to spread misinformation.

Re: “Help the poor adapt to climate change,” May 20

We are mystified that the Nelson Star chose to print this letter by Mr. Tom Harris. A quick Internet search will reveal that he is paid by industry to spread misinformation about the climate issue. (See for example desmogblog.com/tom-harris)

This type of misinformation is different than an informed debate. It is a purposeful attempt funded by industry to intentionally confuse the public about the issues. The same approach was used by the tobacco industry to confound the link between smoking and cancer — which Harris is also linked to. The Star’s readership is more educated than Harris presumes, and so should readily see through his smoke and mirrors charade.

In this era, when the effects of climate change are all around us, it is urgent that we transition rapidly toward a low carbon economy. There is no debate in the scientific community about this: 97 percent of climate scientists are convinced, based upon the evidence, that human-caused global warming is happening.

More than ever, ordinary citizens like ourselves need to join together to insist that our elected leaders act on climate change. We need a serious and ambitious plan so that we can have a prosperous future without fossil fuels. For more information about our local Citizens’ Climate Lobby group, please email CCL.westkootenay@gmail.com.

Laura Sacks and Michael Jessen

Nelson-West Kootenay Chapter

Citizens’ Climate Lobby


Re: “Help the poor adapt to climate change,” May 20

Amazing that a “climate science” coalition member would suggest it is “immoral” to try to curb greenhouse gas emissions, to invest in climate mitigation measures.

Other scientists, including former NASA climate scientist James Hansen feel so strongly about the moral imperative of preventing runaway climate change that they have been arrested as a result of some of their efforts. Hansen wrote in 2013: “We still have time to choose. Will we seek out and exploit ever deeper and dirtier fossil fuels or phase in cleaner carbon-free energy? If we start aggressively reducing carbon emissions, we can stabilize our climate and avoid cataclysmic change. Our fate truly is in our hands.”

A recent IMF study shows fossil fuel industries get $5.3 trillion per year in subsidies, globally. As biochemist Lynne Quarmby states, “That is $10 million per minute of public subsides to big oil! Don’t let anyone tell you that we can’t afford alternative energies, green tech and clean tech.”

There is a concerted PR effort to discredit legitimate climate science and Tom Harris is part of that effort. To learn more about Tom Harris’ links to tobacco and fossil fuel interests, check out information about him on Desmogblog.com .

Jan Slakov, Salt Spring Island

Kate Polle, Victoria



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