Climate change deniers are peddling dangerous falsehoods - Readers' Letters

A climate change activist gets her message across during a protest in LondonA climate change activist gets her message across during a protest in London
A climate change activist gets her message across during a protest in London
I felt it was only a matter of time before somebody extrapolated from the current spell of chilly weather, reaching a conclusion that climate change was therefore not happening; as it happens, your correspondent, Clark Cross, did exactly that in your edition of 16 May.

Mr Cross is peddling dangerous falsehoods. A BBC weather report earlier this month showed how our unseasonable cold was mirrored by more extreme relative warmth in southern and eastern Europe. Seeing this report led me to investigate further.

The Met Office's website includes fascinating map-based animations for the UK showing anomalies between current average maxima and the average maxima in different 30-year historical periods. This scientific data prove that the climate is warming. The EU's Copernicus site does the same for the wider world, as well as illustrating worrying trends in, for example, sea ice cover.

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The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has, as a cursory glance shows, consistently warned of the linkage between human activity and unsustainable rises in global temperatures – here is a quote from their 2018 report :"Human activities are estimated to have caused approximately 1C of global warming above pre-industrial levels, with a likely range of 0.8C to 1.2C. Global warming is likely to reach 1.5C between 2030 and 2052 if it continues to increase at the current rate. (high confidence).”

But it's not just about scientific theory – we also hear that, for instance, Bangladesh is faced with the encroachment of sea water which is already devastating crops in coastal areas; and low lying islands are losing access to drinking water as brackish sea water contaminates local supplies.

People in these situations are in crisis, and will find it ever harder to be able to live where they do now. We might wish for a little more warmth here in Scotland, but that wish ought not to blind us to recognising that denying human led climate change is hugely irresponsible.

Colin Brown

Dudley Gardens, Edinburgh

Boiling point

We are being told that in the best interest of climate protection we must stop using gas boilers as a means of home heating. I am being phoned by British Gas every time I have a repair done on my gas boiler to quote me for a new one. Has no-one told them about saving the world?

Dennis Forbes Grattan

Bucksburn, Aberdeen

Nuclear safety

I very much agree with your editorial comment that we need more openness and transparency over nuclear safety incidents affecting our nuclear weapon facilities at Faslane and Coulport (16 May)

Our close ally the United States is much more open with its nuclear safety record, and the public deserve to know that Trident submarines and the regular road convoys from Aldermaston to Scotland are undertaken as safely as possible. A more than doubling of safety incidents to 148 is troubling, that at least 18 of them are likely to have involved some form of radiation release even more so.

I am concerned that the Ministry of Defence is struggling to retain enough specialised staff to adequately maintain the nuclear weapons programme as older staff retire, and much of the equipment is old and in need of urgent replacement.

Whatever your views are on the bomb, and ours is to completely remove it, these facilities need to be safe and the public kept fully protected. I commend Scotland on Sunday for raising this issue.

Cllr Feargal Dalton

Convener of Nuclear Free Local Authorities Scotland Forum,

Glasgow City Chambers

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