To the Editor:
It's hot, and my 3-year-old is sweaty and curious.
He always wants to know more about the world, and on Tuesday he asked me 'why is it like the fog but in the sky?' The haziness had filtered the sun to a dull glow all day. Apparently, this was a consequence of wildfires, unprecedented and escalating in magnitude, most recently in Oregon. Their attendant smoky particulate matter had shifted eastward to our little neighborhood in New Haven, Connecticut.
We are now entering 400+ days of above-average temperatures globally, our 1.5°C global carbon budget largely expended, not obviously on track to rescue our 2 or 3°C budgets either.
As a millennial, trying to build a family and battling against student loan debt, it's easy to exhaust my days on my job, playing at the playground with our boy, and Netflix. But when I see him, drenched in sweat and asking about the haze, I think about other people's kids. I think about those who have come before us to iron out problems like hunger or childhood disease, and I know I have to do better.
We all have to do better. Connecticut leaders need to address this problem with the seriousness it warrants, for our children. The recent passage of the Act Concerning Climate Change Adaptation is, to be sure, hopeful. But last month's failure of the governor to include the Transportation Climate Initiative in his budget proposal - on the very day of [state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection] DEEP's first summer air quality alert - represents a staggering lack of leadership. Our elected officials are failing our children, and we must express our priorities at the ballot box.
For you, our children, we must do better.