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LETTER: Emissions targets already set by science

'Reaching net-zero is the only option if we care about the future of the students,' writes Laurel Hood
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Collingwood elementary and high school students joined a march and protest calling for more and immediate action on climate change on Sept. 27, 2019. Erika Engel/CollingwoodToday

CollingwoodToday.ca welcomes letters to the editor. They can be sent to erika@collingwoodtoday.ca, or submitted online. Letter submissions must include the writer's full name and address as well as a phone number for verification purposes. 
The following letter was submitted in response to a council discussion and decision covered in an article titled Town's emissions targets ‘not reaching far enough’: Councillor

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Editor, 

I attended a Collingwood town council meeting on Tuesday, Sept, 20 to listen to the discussion regarding a “minimum” 20 per cent reduction in emissions by 2030 and it was apparent to me that much of the current council does not understand the peril that we are in.

I urge them to become more informed about the urgency required.

If Collingwood wants to be part of a global solution then the emissions reductions we must achieve are already determined by science.

“To keep global warming to no more than 1.5°C – as called for in the Paris Agreement – emissions need to be reduced by 45 per cent by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050, states the United Nation's net-zero coalition website.

Reaching net-zero is the only option if we care about the future of the students, who were sitting in the audience, as the council debated what they were willing to do or whether it would be too expensive.

We are extraordinarily lucky to live in Canada and in Ontario where we have experienced very few of the effects of climate change, yet.

Pakistan is drowning. Pakistan, as a country, has contributed very little to global warming. Canada, on the other hand, is the seventh greatest emitter per capita on the planet.

Do we need to invest? Yes. Is it going to be hard? Absolutely.

The goal is to stop using fossil fuels – gas, propane, fuel oil. Of course it is going to be hard. Hard is not what keeps me up at night. What keeps me up at night are the political leaders that are unwilling or unable to do what needs to be done.

Laurel Hood
Collingwood, ON