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Letter to the Editor: Our voices need to be heard

The 2022 wildfire season is just around the corner. Right now I’m not so much worried as I am very disappointed. I’m upset that comprehensive legislation to tackle climate change is stalled in Congress. I’m upset Representative LaMalfa does not believe excessive carbon in our atmosphere is caused by human beings. Just clean up the forests and we’ll be okay…phooey!

 

I’m unhappy with the smoky air, too. Everyone should be. Especially the people who have to work outside. And don’t forget the children who are outdoors running around in the summer. Some people wear an N95 or P100 mask when outside, and otherwise stay in with the air conditioning on and an air filtration system running. But what about the people who can’t afford air conditioning and/or air filtration? Oh, just stay in your house and swelter!

 

Most healthy adults and children will recover quickly from short term smoke exposure. However, everyone should understand that long term exposure is unwise, particularly for people with underlying conditions, as well as children under 18 and adults over 65. Negative health effects include aggravated asthma, decreased lung function, coughing, difficulty breathing, exacerbation of emphysema, an irregular heartbeat, nonfatal heart attacks, and even premature death in people with lung or heart disease. Just recently a study out of Stanford University reported wildfire smoke during pregnancy increases the risk of premature birth.

This is not the time to be complacent. If you’re concerned or upset, speak up! Call, write, or email your congressmen. We need to make our voices heard.

Robbin Anderson

Portola

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