Don't Blame It All on Global Warming

Some use it as excuse to ignore pressing local issues
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Aug 3, 2008 7:57 AM CDT
Marine One flies over flooded areas of Coralville, Iowa as President Bush surveys damage from flooding in the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City areas on Thursday, June 19, 2008.    (AP Photo/Liz Martin)
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(Newser) – Global warming is a serious issue—but it shouldn't blind us to other immediate environmental concerns, writes Joel Achenbach in the Washington Post. “Humans are environment-destroying creatures by nature" and ruining the earth in any number of ways—but instead of paying attention to pressing local issues, every disaster is now written off as the result of climate change, Achenbach warns.

“Even if we stabilized the planet's climate, we'd still have an environmental crisis on our hands,” Achenbach writes. Take Iowa’s floods, for example. Floods may be exacerbated by rising temperatures, but the real culprit is likely from human action such as the killing of wetlands and straightening of streams. “You should worry about global warming. But you don't need to worry about global warming when your house is on fire,” Achenbach notes.