44° Good Afternoon
44° Good Afternoon

Letter: Change habits to help save the planet

Shafts of sunlight filter through the forest canopy

Shafts of sunlight filter through the forest canopy strike smoke from fires burning outside family huts at an Mbuti pygmy hunting camp in the Okapi Wildlife Reserve outside the town of Epulu, Congo on March 21, 2010. Photo Credit: AP / Rebecca Blackwell

None of this is easy,” a Newsday editorial states about needed responses to the threats posed by climate change [“Climate change rolls in,” Jan. 17]. “These decisions go to the heart of what it means to live on Long Island.”

They also go the heart of what it means to live on this planet in a sustainable way. We look to protect our coastal communities while continuing the very behavior that encourages climate change: excessive consumption of fossil fuels. Among other things, Long Islanders continue to buy and drive large cars and trucks; build, buy, and heat and cool large houses; eat too high on the food chain too often; run leaf-blowers for hours; use clothes dryers instead of clothes lines; skip reusable bags; and just buy too much stuff we don’t really need, but which entails the burning of fossil fuels in manufacturing and transportation.

We are like chain smokers who want to be saved from cancer while refusing to stop smoking. Climate change is the result of our unhealthy consumerism, and in the end the only real cure is to kick the habit.

Joseph Bonasia, Smithtown