The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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April 3, 2014

Acting on unsettled science hurts economy

In a recent letter, a writer raises a thoughtful question. What harm will be done if we change things based on the premises of global warming, whether or not it is true?

One harm I have noticed is a 56 percent increase in my electricity rate in the last 10 years. Whereas my natural gas rate only went up 3 percent.

I see our gas tax dollars being diverted — while our transportation infrastructure crumbles — to projects like light rail that are not going to be economically feasible unless significant populations are encouraged/forced to concentrate around these fixed transportation corridors.

Arguments based on the “settled science” of global warming are used to restrain developments that could unleash our economy such as the pipelines, hydraulic fracturing, conventional and oil sand mining. How can the science be settled when we can’t even agree on how many scientists believe in it.

A study, in a peer reviewed publication (http://oss.sagepub.com/content/33/11/1477.full), states that only 36 percent of surveyed engineers and geoscientists “express the strong belief that climate change is happening, that it is not a normal cycle of nature, and humans are the main or central cause.”

I also do not believe we will be living in caves. I have faith in man’s adaptability and ingenuity. As true need arises we will triumph over any challenges that confront us. However, I see much harm in altering almost all aspects of our economy, existence and liberty based on a disputed premise. From a just published Wall Street Journal article: “it appears that in our efforts to combat warming we may have been taking the economic equivalent of chemotherapy for a cold.”

Kim Spears

City Councilman

North Mankato

FP didn’t balance Doonesbury

I find it interesting that The Free Press has chosen not to run Mallard Fillmore on a daily basis anymore because Doonesbury is no longer running a daily column.

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