Lt. Governor Mead Treadwell is under the dangerous impression that he can have his cake and eat it too when it comes to Alaska's non-renewable natural resources ("The U.S. is an 'Arctic Nation,' " HCN, 8/20/12). We all hope for economic recovery, and oil reserves are certainly a fast path to that for Alaska. But Treadwell doesn't seem to understand the price he is asking Alaskans and all Americans to pay. His proposals could bring us a future in which global carbon emissions from unfettered oil and gas development lead to irreversible impacts on our agricultural systems, coastal cities, the ecological integrity of our forests, and the integrity of pretty much every other facet of our society.
I do not accept his argument that if we don't develop these resources, someone else will. That kind of thinking will only lead to a tragedy of the commons of epic proportions. We need to make putting the brakes on climate change a moral imperative for our country and the world.
Bainbridge Island, Washington