In this July 21, 2022, file photo, a small neighborhood sits on dry land at the edge of the Scarborough Marsh in Scarborough. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

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For the upcoming congressional election, an examination of the websites of Bruce Poliquin and U.S. Rep. Jared Golden may help the voter decide.

Golden’s website has a paragraph that calls climate change “the greatest environmental challenge of our time,” and supports both the Paris climate agreement and recent legislation that calls on the federal government to take “actions necessary to address climate change.”

The “issues” section on Poliquin’s website makes no mention of climate change.

I don’t think it was editorial oversight that caused the Poliquin website to say nothing on this issue. That essentially has long been the position of the Republican Party on climate change: Say little, do nothing.

How has the Republican Party gotten itself into this mindset? The main reason, I think, is that effective action must be done by the government. Voluntarism won’t cut it. I think Republicans hate to admit that an activist government, one that makes rules and regulations, may be necessary.

Are my comments giving excessive emphasis to just one issue? I don’t think so. To my mind, there are only two policy areas where bad outcomes could destroy us all: nuclear war and climate change. All other issues are by comparison of secondary importance.

Is climate change really that menacing? Many respectable projections are terrifying. Drought, famine, mass migration, excessive heat and wildfires. And coming more slowly but inexorably, rising sea levels. Calculations have it that if all the world’s ice sheets were to melt away, sea levels could rise more than 200 feet.

Shane Hunt

Palermo