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Action is antidote to climate-change grief

September 14, 2013
The Leader Herald

Thank you for printing Kurt Mraz's comments about my letter to the editor. He and I are both Virginians writing to an upstate New York newspaper. We care about our country and look for ways to share our vision with folks outside of our community. Peas in a pod, me and Mraz.

We have both researched climate change. However, our conclusions differ.

I have deduced the earth doesn't have a carbon deficit, the carbon dioxide we've added causes problems, we have limited time in which to fix the problem and the United States must lead the charge.

I didn't always think this way. When I was a young mother, I stumbled upon global warming. Hands full of dirty diapers, I asked my biologist brother if I should worry about climate change. He said no. So I didn't.

When the kids entered school, I dug around on my own. What I read about a warming earth matched my experiences. Hot places are getting hotter, dry places are getting drier, and wet places are getting wetter.

The seriousness of the problem brought me to my knees. I went through the stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining and depression.

The final stage - acceptance - was hard. How can it be that living the American dream today will cause problems for my children down the road? Well, I'm not the only one plugged into the fossil-fuel economy. Manmade climate change is cumulative.

Action is my antidote to grief. I'm growing a garden and sharing the abundance with friends who happily accept my gifts. I've joined Citizens Climate Lobby and meet with members of Congress. I share what I've learned and ask each one of them - Democrat and Republican - to be my climate heroes.

Democracy and gardening: life couldn't be better.

ELLI SPARKS

Keysville, Va.

 
 

 

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