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Climate change needs urgent action

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By The Staff

Our government officials and legislators have plenty of things to work on these days — both at the national and local levels. The economy, health care, education, two wars and state budget cuts — the list goes on and on. But there is a giant looming behind these issues that is more important than all of them: global climate change. Bad decisions or inaction in any of the other areas — even the wars — can have serious consequences but can be remedied. But if we don’t take prompt, effective action on climate change, the consequences verge on catastrophic and cannot be remedied. A recent study by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows that changes in surface temperature, rainfall and sea level are largely irreversible for more than 1,000 years after carbon dioxide emissions are completely stopped.

This is particularly important to us in New Mexico, since the data indicate that we could face permanent drought conditions comparable to the dust bowl of the 30s. An analysis by the Nature Conservancy indicates that New Mexico’s average annual temperature would spike by 8.6 degrees by 2100. This would have a huge economic impact on the state.


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