Eden Magnet Letters to the Editor, December 6

BIRD LIFE: Lunch time at Snug Cove, Eden with Freedom Charters. Picture: Ben Smyth
BIRD LIFE: Lunch time at Snug Cove, Eden with Freedom Charters. Picture: Ben Smyth

Is anyone listening?

David Attenborough has described climate change as mankind’s “greatest threat in thousands of years”, warning it could lead to the collapse of civilisations. But who is listening? 

The Liberals have their heads in the sand and their hands in the pockets of the coal lobby.  Their acolyte voters, who read inaccurate rubbish published by fossil fuel promoters, have no interest in learning the facts endlessly produced by scientists. 

Children, the next generation, are screaming for their future to be protected but no-one responds. Soon it will be too late.

Olwen Morris, Tura Beach

Teaching values

As a retired principal and teacher I’m glad that Liberal MPs have accused students of “rioting" over climate change. It keeps the spotlight on the issue. 

Far from "rioting" the students were applying their education - critically thinking about relevant issues, engaging with others and taking responsible action.

That’s not an opinion but policy as outlined in the Values We Teach document which applies to all key learning areas in schools (excerpts below):

“RESPONSIBILITY:  Being accountable for your individual and community's actions towards yourself, others and the environment...

FAIRNESS: Being committed to the principles of social justice...

DEMOCRACY: Accepting and promoting the rights, freedoms and responsibilities of being an Australian citizen...

...In the process of learning students develop: ...ecologically sustainable practices...

Outcomes of schooling: ...being active citizens of Australia and the world...

Social outcomes: Schooling is also about the future. Our community looks to today’s students to determine the world of tomorrow...”

It’s a shame that we don’t have such a mandatory document to apply to the federal government’s decision-making processes because the current government (through inaction on renewable energy and deforestation) is contributing to a global existential threat.  The intelligence, concerns, activism and wit of the striking students should be listened to, not mocked. 

David Gallan, Tathra

Dogs die in hot cars

Heatwaves and record temperatures are being recorded right across the country, even before the official start of summer. This is not just uncomfortable – it can be deadly.

Authorities are pleading for motorists to leave their dogs at home or in a cool location. There have already been an alarming number of reports of animals suffering heat stress in cars and backyards.

If dogs are left in a parked car for even a short amount of time, they can die. On a 30 degree day, the temperature inside a car can potentially rise to well over 40 degrees in less than five minutes. In one test, the temperature rose to 57 degrees in 12 minutes. Any animal left inside that car would be dead.

If you see a dog showing any symptoms of heatstroke – including restlessness, heavy panting, vomiting, lethargy and lack of coordination – get the animal into the shade immediately.

You can lower a dog's body temperature by providing the dog with water, applying a cold towel to the dog's head and chest or immersing the dog in tepid (not ice-cold) water. Then immediately call a veterinarian.

Please, when it’s warm outside, leave animals at home. If you see a dog left in a car, have the car's owner paged at nearby stores or call 000 immediately and never leave until the animal is safe — their life may depend on your actions.

Desmond Bellamy, PETA Australia

  • Send your letters to the editor to ben.smyth@fairfaxmedia.com.au or to the addresses below. Submissions must be no longer than 300 words and may be edited for legal or length reasons.