The July 18 paper featured a jarring juxtaposition of articles on the front page: “Ready to rocket” next to “Seattle lacks strategy for responding to a heat wave.”
Those adjacent headlines encapsulate the challenges of controlling climate change. The “ego-capitalism” of billionaire space-tourism entrepreneurs grabs the boldface capital letters and enthusiasm. Next to it, concern for one of its consequences, unrestrained fossil-fuel consumption, takes a smaller size font. Savvy readers might make the connection between the stories.
Lamentably, the article on the long-term prospects for space travel omits any mention of its lasting impact on the atmosphere. Per mile, space joy rides are far more harmful to the planet than commercial flights or cruises. No matter what fuel the rockets use, they burn enormous amounts of propellants, depleting the ozone layer and emitting large quantities of heat-trapping greenhouse gases.
Peggy J. Printz, Seattle