I probably have a different reaction than most people toward the increase in gasoline prices ["Gas prices climb," News, May 7]. From an environmental standpoint, a rise in gas prices is a good thing.

Because of the increased price, fewer people will want to drive and pay for the more expensive gas. The increased prices serve as a disincentive for citizens who use gas for transportation.

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A decrease in gas purchases means a decrease in the incomplete combustion of fossil fuels. The incomplete combustion of fossil fuels produces by-products such as nitrogen oxides, sulfur oxides and carbon dioxide. The first two cause damage to the human respiratory system, including the irritation of asthma and emphysema.

Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas that traps infrared rays, leading to an increase in global temperatures. This climate change could destroy habitats and, in turn, kill many organisms.

Tyler Lorberbaum, Oceanside