Comprehensive Strategy on Climate Change
Is Our Climate Changing?
The short answer is yes. Both empirical observation as well as statistical data shows that our global climate is warming. The scientific community is mostly in agreement that the recent, rapid changes in the earth’s climate is due to CO2 emissions into the earth’s atmosphere. These CO2 emissions are generated, in part, by man’s use of fossil fuels as an energy source for transportation and power generation.
What Can Oregon Do to Reduce the Rate of Climate Change?
CO2 levels and resultant climate change are a global problem. To have the most impact, we need to think in terms of a global solution. I believe one of the most impactful things Oregon can do to slow climate change is to support climate and energy research efforts in our University System. This is our opportunity to support collaboration with other institutions worldwide, to develop clean, convenient, inexpensive energy technology that can be exported globally.
How Can We Mitigate the Consequences of Climate Change?
The consequences of climate change will continue to be felt until a global commitment can be undertaken to reverse this trend. The sooner we can implement a strategy that deals with these consequences, the further ahead we will be. Some of the consequences of climate change are dryer, hotter summers, and reduced snowpack in the winter. This increases the risk and the severity of wildfires. We must be prepared to implement a comprehensive strategy that includes controlled burns and forest ecosystem management. Oregon needs to implement a strategy that incorporates both water conservation and water resource management.