Note: Opinions expressed in commentary on Raven Radio are those of the author, and are not necessarily shared by KCAW’s board, staff, or volunteers.


Libby Stortz, sheltering in place at her home in Sitka.

This is Libby Stortz and this is my opinion.

COVID is forcing us to see everything is interconnected on our planet.  No country, religion, first or third world keeps it out. Climate change is also a pandemic.  With both it’s only a matter of time without action before they creep up on us. Habitats  destroyed and diminished, or market forces bringing together species susceptible to contagion, brings pandemic. Unrelenting industrial development and human settlement expansion cause environmental degradation and climate change pandemic. Those living nearest to industrial sites, lacking food security, access to quality health care, physical safety or financial security, have the worst survival outcomes for COVID and climate change.  Let’s wake up and recognize the catastrophe of climate change raging, while COVID rages.  Extinction is the end game.

Scientists have the most accurate information about COVID, so they’re the best sources to listen to.  Changes in advice are based on new information and it’s transparent. Likewise, scientists know the most about Climate Change because it’s theories tested and replicated, determine facts.

Political will is required for isolation, masks, widespread testing, and vaccine development. Countries with political will get control faster. We’re demonstrating daily our capacity to take quick action saving our lives and billions of people we don’t even know.  It’s also needed to face climate change but less challenging in some ways.

Our country needs to pass carbon fee and dividend legislation, stop subsidizing carbon and methane production, ramp up alternative energy and zero waste industries, clean up our environment and provide healthy habitats for all creatures sharing the planet. Here are thousands of well paying jobs.

This may be the best time for Civilian Conservation Corps programs, like the Great Depression’s, that got people back to work. Life’s a set of challenging, often, painful changes but if we pay attention and take measures, we can go forward and with a little bit of luck, something positive will happen.

By 1970 environmental destruction and climate change were known as slow growing pandemics leading to the first Earth Day. They’ve been creeping up on us for more than 50 years. So, let’s do our part, get through COVID and mitigate the Climate Change pandemic too.

Thanks for listening.  This is Libby Stortz.