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After reading last Sunday’s curious letter to the editor from Kenneth Larsen of Calistoga ("Thank Trump for removing us from Paris Accord," Jan. 6), I was disturbed enough to pull out pencil/paper (actually sit down at the computer) and write a response.

Mr. Larsen heaped praise on Donald Trump for pulling us out of the Paris Climate Accord, essentially saying that America had done enough and it was time for the rest of the world to do their part. He sincerely thanked the President for encouraging America’s dedication to the development of shale oil as a clean, cheap source of electrical power generation.

Cheap, maybe. Clean? Leaves me wondering in what fantasy world he is living, especially since last year he witnessed first-hand the results of climate change right there in his own backyard.

I recently became a first-time grandfather and am totally excited, on one hand, about having this darling new addition to our family. On the other, I am forced to seriously contemplate the future of the earth’s environment within which she will some day find herself. This contemplation leaves me frightened for her and for the rest of the planet’s grandchildren to come.

Trump has a penchant for hiring, as his Cabinet Secretaries and advisors, big money cronies who are often deeply entangled in the oil, coal and right-wing talk show industries. These appointments often appear to border on obligations (perhaps for past favors?).

Frequently, such unqualified hires seem to have a tighter grip on his decision making than do the facts laid out by well-informed climate and environmental scientists. Many of these highly regarded yet ignored scientists were actually hired by Trump’s Washington administration.

The president’s insistence on increasing our dependence on fossil fuels, while drastically cutting the funding needed for research aimed at developing more efficient solar, wind and other alternative energy sources all flies in the face of the overwhelming scientific evidence with which he’s been presented.

The president’s determination to slash many of the budgets of previously established conservation related programs focused on the reduction of current energy consumption looks to be based on ulterior motives relating to money, either his own or those of his influencers.

Mr. Larsen, and others of his like-minded comrades, often seem to be thinking only of the "now," contemplation of the future be damned. That approach to living in the 21st century appears to be somewhat selfish and certainly doesn’t bode well for who and what comes next.

I guess that I have no alternative other than thinking positive and hoping that there will be new ideas, new discoveries and new hope for us saving us from ourselves. Fingers crossed that at some point my granddaughter’s future will look brighter than it does today.

Chris Sauer


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