Louise Stonington Posted almost 2 years ago James Hansen: Why I must speak out about climate change The question is not 'Which costs are higher?' If you were diagnosed with a deadly disease would you compare the cost of treatment against the cost of your lost wages if you die, and take the less expensive option? The LAG TIME is the critical issue here. Once carbon dioxide is released into air, humans cannot get it 'back in the bottle.' CO2 keeps the temperatures of the earth go higher for decades after it is released; it takes a long time for the very huge oceans to warm up. Twenty or so years after humans stop burning fossil fuels and increasing the CO2 levels in air, the temperatures will level off, not go down. Then there are the feedbacks, for example the melting permafrost releases methane which is a much more powerful greenhouse gas even than CO2, which warms the earth more, melting more permafrost. These feedbacks are the reason why the reports mention the possiblility of 'runaway global warming' or warming that humans can no longer control. If we wait too long, it is possible for Earth to become so hot that civilization is totally impossible, with deserts taking up the temperate zone, and the poles getting more temperature temperatures, but not having the topsoil we need to grow crops nor enough winter sunlight to maintain them. The fossil fuel companies have spent a billion and more on a campaign to keep their 85% market share of energy and 95% share of transportation. Retire the fossils. Solar, wind, geothermal, batteries, algae and efficiency technology can take care of our needs. Citizen Climate Lobby helps people counter the fossil fuel lobbyists that we pay for with every purchase.