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Letters to the Editor: "Encouraging and thought-provoking."

Ecologists try in quiet ways to save the planet

I found Carolyn Lochhead's article "Ecologists try in quiet ways to save planet" (Jan. 5) both encouraging and thought-provoking.

It marries two subjects, economics and ecology, which are in the news daily. We read about our economy in terms of growth and our planet in terms of its stressors. The link between them is clear: We've transformed what was an empty world where nature was abundant and human presence small into a full world where human activity has reached the limits of Earth's capacity to absorb wastes and generate resources.

Our economic growth is counterproductive when it creates more problems than we can solve. An example is the link between fossil fuels, greenhouse gases, and climate change.

The article points out that we do have a tool to address this problem, a carbon tax on fossil fuels. In this way, we would be using the economist's tools to address a problem that is only growing larger for our planet as time ticks on. I hope the quiet ecologists, radical economists and brave politicians will work together to put in place a carbon tax. Time is of the essence.

Kim Ries, San Francisco

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