To the Editor:
I appreciated the June 2 article entitled "Hurricane Season's Here" for providing important information that Cape May County residents can use to keep safe. However, the article failed to mention the impact climate change is having on these storms.
Of course, hurricanes have always been a part of living at the shore. But, the storms we see today are not the same as even 30 years ago.
The U.S. Global Change Research Program, which is made up of scientists from 13 federal agencies, found that hurricanes have become more powerful since the 1980s. Hurricanes are also moving more slowly and dumping more rain than they used to.
All of these documented trends result in more damage to human communities when storms make landfall, something that Americans in Houston and Puerto Rico, unfortunately, experienced last year. And, all of these trends are linked to climate change, because science tells us that warmer ocean waters fuel stronger storms.
According to NASA, 97 percent of climate scientists have reached the same conclusion that humans are causing the earth, including the oceans, to warm up. Climate change puts everyone at risk for more extreme and unpredictable weather.
Those of us who are living in coastal communities like Cape May County face particular risks, not only from stronger hurricanes but also rising sea levels. And, the problem is only getting worse, and humans continue to burn more and more fossil fuels.
But, there is something we can do! We can use our voices and speak up! Tell our elected officials at every level, county, state and, national, to take steps that will slow climate change.
There are solutions to the climate crisis, but we must demand them from our politicians. One solution, which is placing a fee on carbon emissions and returning all the money in equal shares to American households, has been widely endorsed across the political spectrum. The carbon-fee-and-dividend plan is a fair, free-market climate solution that will create jobs without growing government.
Tell our elected representatives at every level that we must act on climate change to protect Cape May County.