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Letter: Climatic catastrophe

Sir: Thankfully, senior US scientists have at last joined the clamour for action on climate change. We are now in need of a convincing political follow-up.

Much stricter measures should have been adopted at least a decade ago.

Instead an extra tranche of fossil burning plant has been introduced worldwide. This has a nominal lifetime of some 40 years and hence is costly and inconvenient to replace. The longer this practice continues, the worse the position will get. Increased atmospheric CO2 concentrations persist for over a hundred years after gas emission.

The issue is compounded by a variety of obstacles to the introduction of replacement low-CO2 industrial plant quickly enough to avoid serious harm to many more people. So far,the attitude of certain key politicians and industrialists, notably in the USA, has been to keep their heads firmly in the sand. Now they must be admonished to address seriously the challenges, trade offs and commercial opportunities involved in switching to a hydrogen fuel - renewable energy - energy conservation based world.

If they don't, the public and especially anyone below middle age, should be asking "why not?".


Cheltenham, Gloucestershire