Letter to the Editor by Cate St. Clair

To the Editor:

Information literacy is crucial to democracy.

In his most recent letter to the editor, Lowell Engle cites a July 19, 2022 NASA article that claims climate changes are a result of “the changes in the earth’s solar orbit and not because of SUVs and fossil fuel.”

In the time it took you to read that sentence, you could also fact check it. Reuters reports and NASA submits that this claim, popular on social media, has long been debunked. The Milankovitch Cycles, Earth’s shifting of position relative to the sun over geological time, are not responsible for climate change.

“A spokesperson for NASA similarly told Reuters that the scientists are ‘confident Earth’s recent warming is primarily due to human activities - specifically, the direct input of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into Earth’s atmosphere from burning fossil fuels or other anthropogenic activities.’ ”

We all agree that information literacy is a necessary skill in the digital age. Spreading false claims is not only lazy, but potentially dangerous. As a society we can only confront our differences in a meaningful way from a shared foundation of facts.

Cate St. Clair