Earth Week is about the time Central Oregonians may start to expect warmer weather, which will be welcome, at first.
But I am apprehensive about extreme heat, fire and smoke, due to our changing climate. Last summer, Bend hit a record 107 degrees in June, followed by many fires and very unhealthy smoke.
On April 5th, the Bulletin reported on a prediction of early and above normal wildfire risk for us due to low snowpack and continuing drought.
I am worried that my house and neighborhood could burn down, as well as other parts of our region and Oregon. Extreme high temperatures bring suffering, illness, and even death, to susceptible people without air conditioning, and especially those with no house to shelter in.
With three grandchildren under five, I am very concerned about what the future climate will mean for their lives, which should extend into the next century.
One thing that we can do to take collective action to fight climate change and to deal with its current effects, is to vote in the May Democratic primary.
There are two contested elections of particular importance. Tina Kotek, running for Governor, is the best candidate on climate issues, who has had the most success in passing climate legislation. And Jamie McLeod-Skinner, running for Congress for the 5th District, is far more committed to effective action on climate than her main opponent.
Please give these two candidates your very serious consideration.
Peter Kunen, SE Bend