Posted by: ericgrimsrud | May 18, 2016

Kudos to a US Senator

While I have come to expect less than sufficient leadership on the issue of climate change from most of our elected officials in Washington DC, US Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island provides a sterling exception to this trend. For the last four years, whenever the US Senate is in session, he has provided one presentation per week concerning various aspects of climate change. His presentations are excellent and scientifically up to date.  As an example of them, I am providing here one that focuses on the other enormous ecosystem – the oceans – that is also being decimated by increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide.

Senator Whitehouse makes it clear that action against carbon dioxide emissions is also urgently needed in order to stop acidification of our oceans. The acidification of our oceans caused by its absorption of CO2 is damaging our oceanic ecosystems because it makes the calcium carbonate shells of marine critters more soluble thereby stressing and killing those critters. The coral reefs of the world are providing vast and visible evidence of effect.

Please see Senator Whitehouse’s speech at  Several additional speeches by Senator Whitehouse follow, each making important points concerning climate change.

After watching Senator Whitehouse’s speeches, one might ask why are there not more US Senators and Representative that have a similarly grown-up views of the natural sciences? And why, one might ask, is there so little scientific expertise of this sort among the elected officials of our country?  And when are we going to learn that we cannot dictate our preferences to Mother Nature, but instead, must use our vast scientific knowledge to live in harmony with Her.

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