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The article I read talked about the United Kingdom’s ambitious climate goals of absorbing as much carbon from the atmosphere as is produced by the year 2050, and I thought it would be interesting to see what the UK contributed to cop26. Since the conference has started, the UK has pledged £290 million to help poorer countries with the climate crisis; the bulk of this money is going to Asian and Pacific countries that are especially susceptible to the climate crisis. A pledge of $100 billion was made in 2009 to have by 2020, but this was not met, and it is now projected to be ready by 2023. It will be interesting to see when and if the United Kingdom follows through with their pledge to help poorer countries reverse some of the damage that has been done due to climate change.

Nuclear Energy

Nuclear energy could potentially be very useful because of how powerful the infrastructure is, so it would be a robust enough energy source to supply energy to large areas. However, the byproducts of creating nuclear energy can be very harmful to surrounding environments if it is not disposed of properly. The current method of disposal is typically putting the waste products in big steel containers. However, this method is temporary because if these containers leak, it can be detrimental to the surrounding ecosystem. 

Media Bias: The New York Times

I chose to investigate the New York times as my news source. Based on the graphic, The New York Times is slightly to the left. I expected this result I believe that the New York Times is considered a reliable news source. The bias is only skewed slightly to the left, meaning that there is not much bias detected. I think that this is what makes for a reliable news source; if a source appeals too much to the left or the right, the other side will not acknowledge it at a credible source. It will only further enforce radical views of either side. Therefore, it is important for a news source to remain free from bias if it wants to be taken seriously.

9/24 Discussion

I chose the neutral position on the use of gas. I think that while it would be ideal to cut down on gas use, it is simply not plausible right now. The United States and the people who live here do not have the resources or abilities to alter their gas usage habits by getting an electric car, reducing car use, or getting solar panels. Not all Americans can afford to buy an electric car, and it is not a plausible option for an area without any charging stations nearby. In many places, coal is still used very heavily, so charging stations for cars would not be very efficient because coal is still being burned to power these stations. In rural areas, cars are crucial to get from point A to point B, as riding a bike or even carpooling may not be a convenient or possible option. Solar panels are also not reliable for homes in places where it is not sunny all the time, or it rains/snows/hails for extended periods of time.

Letter Set #2 Revision

The letter “Electric energy vs. fossil fuels” (Aug.7) pointed out that in 2017 the United States derives 3.1 percent of its energy from wind and solar energy. However, in 2012 we were deriving 1.6 percent of our energy from renewable resources. If the contributions of wind and solar doubles every five years, how long will it take for it to replace most other forms of energy?

The letter also points out the Earth’s climate has been changing forever, which is true. However, the main factors in climate change are small, predictable changes in the Earth’s orbit, which changes the amount of sunlight striking the Earth. On the other hand, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the air has risen by 40 percent in the last decade, which correlates with the generally rising trend in global temperatures, with most areas in the world getting warmer rather than cooler. The claim from the letter is that orbital changes is the cause for these changes does not mention that the Earth is predicted to slowly cool over the next 20,000 years, which has not been displayed by global data in recent years.

The letter also says that the climate will change until the sun is extinguished and all life on Earth will vanish. Life as we know it will vanish much sooner if we do not curb our carbon emissions.