Uranium and guns in today’s letters to the editor.
Pick of the day: Climate change and the public health
“Clarion call to address climate change” (Jan. 3 commentary) argued eloquently why faith and medical groups are fighting to combat the changes unchecked carbon pollution is causing. Climate change has profound consequences for our health, particularly for people with lung disease.
We’re already seeing the effects: The Times reported that 2012 was the hottest year on record for Roanoke (“2012 was hottest year for U.S.,” Jan. 9). Higher average temperatures mean more smog, making our city’s 1,700 kids and 6,300 adults with asthma more susceptible to asthma attacks. People with chronic bronchitis and emphysema are more likely to wind up in the emergency room. Infants and children are at greater risk of developing permanent lung problems.
As a pediatric nurse practitioner, I typically see an increase in the number of children with asthma who have worsening of their symptoms when the weather is hot and humid with increased air pollutants.
The time is now for our leaders to act to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and stave off the worst effects of climate change. Members of Congress who would block these necessary actions — putting polluters’ profits over public health — need to understand the serious health consequences of their actions.