2018-03-01 / Letters to the Editor

Your voice matters in climate change fight

To the editor:

Grover Fugate, executive director of the Coastal Resources Management Council, recently gave an excellent and illuminating presentation at the Jamestown library.

He advanced the idea that rising sea levels due to climate change will have a devastating impact on Rhode Island coastal communities. Mr. Fugate’s talk ended without his proposing specific actions to address this threat.

One action is minimizing the causes of climate change — the goal of the Resilient Rhode Island Act — by reducing CO2 emissions in Rhode Island by 25 percent by 2025. The proposed Burrillville fossil fuel plant will have the opposite effect — significant increases to CO2 and accelerated climate change. Also, the plant will cause serious harm to the Blackstone River watershed and our beloved Narragansett Bay. Many residents of Burrillville, most state communities and environmental organizations have united to fight this plant.

Sixty years ago, a small group of forward-thinking Jamestowners fought a similar battle — a large corporation wanted to build a sprawling oil refinery on the north end of Conanicut Island. That plant would have forever altered the character and health of our island and Narragansett Bay. Local residents were aided by groups from surrounding towns on the bay. After four long years, they won and the refinery was abandoned.

Today, many of us would not choose to live here had those brave Jamestowners lost. Now is the time to help our northern neighbors in their struggle — let’s get involved in preserving Rhode Island’s natural beauty and in slowing down the rising sea levels predicted by Mr. Fugate.

Lisa Barsumia
Walcott Avenue

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