As I reach my 92nd year, I would like to apologize to future generations for the perilous condition of our planet’s atmosphere and especially its climate. We have been repeatedly warned by climatologists such as Roger Revelle, Charles Keeling, Wallace Broecker and Jim Hansen that Earth’s climate situation is critical, and that drastic action is needed to save humanity.
We have also been warned by such geophysical entities as the Earth’s glaciers that have existed for millions of years and are now rapidly disappearing. As early as 1896, the Swedish scientist Svante Arrhenius warned that burning fossil fuels would increase the temperature of the atmosphere, but we have ignored this and all subsequent warnings. The rising sea level produced by melting glaciers and icecaps will also jeopardize the well-being of the human race in the future.
The only hope for civilization is that the means to efficiently sequester atmospheric carbon dioxide be developed and that a global effort on the scale of the Manhattan Project, using the best minds available, be designed to implement it.
Wendell Tangborn, retired glaciologist, Seattle