Climate change affects us all



Dear Editor:

Whether you are a climate change believer, denier, or simply curious about climate, measurable facts demonstrate that atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide (CO2), the cause of warming, have skyrocketed since the beginning of the 20th century to levels never before breathed in by humans. Currently these levels are predicted to rapidly climb much higher if we continue to burn fossil fuels.

Individuals can say, “So what, I enjoy warm weather!” or that “Sea level rise is of no concern to me. I don’t own any shoreline property!” However, it is now becoming very clear that CO2 has an insidious consequence for the health of all of us. Two recently published, well-documented studies, the latest by Harvard University’s School of Public Health, both report that CO2 has a direct and worrying negative impact on our mental capabilities (cognition).

One example of this is the decline of our “decision making” abilities. Atmospheric CO2 has now risen to 400-plus ppm (parts per million) and continues to increase. Humans, tested at 600 ppm, showed a significant drop in overall thinking ability (cognition) which, predictably, will worsen as CO2 continues to climb rapidly towards 1,000 ppm. In other words, humans are now being “dumbed down.” Our mental abilities will worsen with the continuing rise of CO2.

Think about this! This predicted rise in CO2 is now, and will continue to affect you and your family’s future in a very negative way. However, we know that the simple solution to this problem is to lower atmospheric CO2 by maintaining and increasing the rate of progress toward reducing the burning of fossil fuels! It is all up to us, if we choose!

Harold W. Borns Jr., Ph.D.

Orono