In response to the recent Olympian guest column from Sen. Tim Sheldon encouraging coal port construction in Longview and Bellingham: I believe his remarks are sadly misguided.
Even if there is competition between Pacific Rim cities for the coal trade, and even if increased trade provides jobs, the benefits are far outweighed by the increase in damage to the world's climate that would surely result.
Analysis of the effect of our coal being burned in the orient is entirely appropriate in view of the global scope of this crisis. Even the Chinese government has recognized this problem and is making an effort to reduce burning their own fossil fuels.
This is no time to reverse this progress. Instead, new jobs can and should be created in fields that do not contribute to air pollution.
If you contact me I will be glad to explain why my career as a fish and wildlife biologist and my current volunteer work in environmental education fully support my position.