State’s transportation sector is a key area to make an impact
Re “A changing New England warming faster” (Page A1, Dec. 31): Northeasterners know the frigid chill they feel in the morning air in January. Although we complain about the cold, the changing seasons are a defining feature of the region that many of us wouldn’t change. Unfortunately, according to a new study, New England is experiencing the warming effects of climate change faster than anywhere else. David Abel cited the study in his article, in which he writes that the seasons as we know them are at risk. Due to climate change, we can expect less seasonal variation, more extreme weather events, and significant sea level rise. To help mitigate the most extreme effects of global climate change, Massachusetts must take immediate action to reduce its emissions.
One of the ways we can accomplish this is by reimagining the state’s transportation system. The transportation sector makes up more than 40 percent of our state’s total emissions. We already know that promoting electrification, public transit, and walking and biking are effective ways to reduce emissions. Other states have already begun implementing their plans to reimagine transportation, which include facilitating a switch to electric buses and setting goals to reduce vehicle miles traveled. Massachusetts needs to do its part to cut emissions.
There is much to do right here, so let’s get busy
A friend recently e-mailed me to say, “Happy New (”If we don’t get it together, we’re screwed!”) Year.” With respect to climate, that’s true.
Dharna Noor focuses on national policy in the article “US carbon emissions increased in 2021″ (BostonGlobe.com, Jan. 10). At the same time, here in Massachusetts, there is much to do. There are multiple bills in the Legislature that would decrease emissions, help us convert to electricity, and make our electricity renewably sourced. Most are in committee and need advocates to urge them forward. But meanwhile, Eversource wants to build a new gas pipeline in Springfield, we don’t yet have a net-zero stretch code for buildings, and public transit is insufficient to get people out of cars. We’re not exactly leading the way.
Everyone should adopt at least one project — advocacy for a bill, opposition to a pipeline, whatever — and push Massachusetts to get a move on. It’s up to all of us.
Gubernatorial hopefuls’ plans of action show promise
Regarding your recent article about the Massachusetts governor’s race (”Climate already shaping gubernatorial race,” Metro, Jan. 10), it is about time that we got candidates — for governor and, hopefully, for many other Massachusetts offices — with their heads in the right place. Nothing — not COVID-19, not the stock market, not billionaires in spaceships — represents a priority like climate change. It’s an existential menace to our species. With every passing minute, the danger it represents grows graver.
I want to see every politician who runs for office in this state fall over one another to get us green faster, whether it’s 2030, 2040, or 2022. As we’ve seen with health care and marriage equality, Massachusetts has often led the nation in good ideas.