Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

Temperatures are climate change


Something exceptional has happened these past few days. It is not the three days of record-breaking temperatures hitting our state. We’ve been warned by forecasters for days that this was likely to happen.

It was not exceptional that temperatures over 100 degrees had everyone talking about how they felt and how they tried to cope. It was very natural to talk about fans, air conditioners, and water.

What was exceptional, in my mind, was how almost no one I heard say the two words that the Whitman County Gazette had also not used in its lead story of June 24, “Heatwave is Poised to Beat Record.”

Climate change!

I wondered if there were still many people who doubted the reality of climate change and were still unconvinced that this was a real phenomenon. Then I wondered what would it take to convince them.

If a 105 degree temperature didn’t, would 110 temps change their mind? But when I said what else I was feeling that I got a clue: for the very first time, viscerally, I felt climate change was real and was here!

I also said what we’d experienced so far was only the beginning. It would get worse. That was scary for me to say and for others to hear. But if there was any truth in what I’d said ... we’d better pay attention.

Bert Sacks



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