Letters to the Lakes Mail: December 5

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Blinded by sceptics

If anyone is interested in the facts of the Medieval warm period just check on Wikipedia.

Both China and India will soon have to stop building coal fired power stations because the horrific pollution levels are killing many thousands of people every year.

I'm sorry that one of your readers will be puking an awful lot in the very near future. Insulting the thousands of climate scientists won't help. They are using some of the world's most powerful computers analysing multimillions of automated data input points from around the whole world (hardly selective). We know that volcanic eruptions can alter the climate, we also know that human produced greenhouse gases now far exceed the combined output from all the world's active volcanoes. There is now general agreement that we are already in an emergency situation that requires 'urgent and forceful' responses. Humans are now pumping over 40 billion tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere every year and nature is not coping. It seems that our leading politicians don't understand science. It also seems that many people have been so blinded by the sceptics' message and vested interests that they refuse to accept the facts.

Terry Annable, Cooranbong

Cutting usage key

People concerned regarding the pumping of a salt saline back into the ocean, when a water desalination plant at Belmont south is established, I believe will have nothing to fear.

The fact that the desalination plant will be next to the sewerage plant, indicates it will be designed to treat and purify sewerage back to drinking water, with only a possibility of treating sea water. A poll now asking if people would be prepared to drink recycled sewerage has to be a dead give away of the intentional usage. I foresee, or would expect in the future, all water supply for all new household sewerage to have a separate pipeline, and pumping stations in cities beside the ocean or salt water estuary to use salt water for toilet flushing as too much drinking water is being flushed out into the ocean. This method should cut water usage by more than 50 per cent and be more cost effective than building another Warragamba Dam. It may be good enough to not need sewerage to be recycled, nor the expense of building and maintaining water desalination plants.

Carl Stevenson, Dora Creek

Cutting CO2 vital

Some facts for Peter Fulton and Carl Stevenson: CO2 has not been at current levels for 3 million years, when temperatures were two to three degrees higher than now and sea levels were about 25 metres higher.

These higher levels were caused by intense volcanic activity. This is based on evidence from geology and ice cores, not computer projections. It is a proved scientific fact that higher levels of CO2 will cause an increase in temperature, and that is what we have been doing since the start of industrialisation. Temperature records show we have already added one degree to average global temperatures. If we do not stop adding more CO2 to the atmosphere the temperature will keep rising and there will be more extreme weather events.

John Moyse, Dora Creek

The answer is simple

I write in response to Peter Fulton's letter published in the Lakes Mail November 28 edition.

In it he asks 'why are China and India continuing to build coal-fired power stations?'.

The answer is simple. Emerging economies like these do not have legislation to adequately protect their citizens from the deadly health impacts of burning coal. In developed economies like Europe, USA and UK Clean Air Acts have been legislated which make other forms of power generation much more attractive.

As a result, global consumption of thermal coal is falling, and the International Energy Agency projects a decline of 3 per cent in 2019, the largest annual decrease ever.

Richard Edmonds, Balcolyn