Sir, – David Attenborough never was a shining beacon of hope – an optimistic Malthusian is an oxymoron – but now his message is ever more drear.
It’s a woke farrago of alarmist cliches, exaggerations, and green propaganda so blatant, shameless, and dishonest it could pass as a political broadcast on behalf of the Extinction Rebellion.
He is “economical with the actualité” regarding the cause of wildfires, heat waves, droughts, storms, floods, polar melting, sea levels and coral reefs.
Viewers are taken by the breathy earnestness and apparent authority of this doyen of TV wildlife “experts” as well as the usual dramatic footage and stirring music guaranteed to bypass the brain and appeal directly to the emotions.
Where there is increasing doubt and debate among scientists on the issue of “global warming”, he pretends the opposite: that the weight of evidence points to an imminent climate catastrophe and the collapse of our societies which can only be averted if we take concerted global action now.
But in fact there isn’t a single piece of scientific evidence which suggests anything of the kind.
Dr John Cameron.
Battery cost is major hurdle
Sir, – I agree with Nick Cole about electric vehicles being the future of transport, and therefore the infrastructure needs improving (‘EV infrastructure more worthwhile than HS2’, Courier, September 17).
However, his information appears to undersell what they are capable of now.
That someone can do a journey of 1,000km, on public roads, using public chargers, in 10 hours*, somewhat undermines his suggestion, “they are incapable of reliably undertaking journeys reaching more than 100 miles away from home”.
That journey was from Germany, through Denmark and Sweden, to Norway.
Clearly, there’s some reliably rapid charging going on there.
Here, Fife Council thinks imposing an extra tax on users of their underwhelming charging infrastructure is the way to go.
It is not the technology that’s the problem!
As Mr Cole notes, EVs are actually simpler than fossil fuel cars.
The basic vehicles themselves are cheaper and more reliable.
It’s the battery that’s been the higher cost. That’s changing. I believe significant announcements are expected shortly.
Building a more equitable future
Sir, – As mankind seems to be at the ‘Crossroads of a Catastrophe’ (Alex Bell, Courier, September 17) it may be time to look into alternative “pathways” towards a more equitable future for us all.
One possibility may be political syncretism, where the merging of several discrete socio-political systems combine to effectively deal with today’s sorry state of affairs.
A study of the Mun, the traditional animist way of life of the Lepcha peoples (original inhabitants of the Eastern Himalayas) may provide guidelines towards a happier future for all Earth’s living creatures.
Abbott’s advice is frightening
Sir, – The prime minister’s credibility has never sunk so low.
From the “world beating” test and trace system which is failing, to the “oven ready” Brexit deal which he is trying to renege on, he has shown himself devoid of competence or principle.
His illegal actions have been condemned by the last five prime ministers and the head of Westminster’s legal department Johnathan Jones, who resigned in protest.
Also resigning was Lord Keen, Advocate General for Scotland and former chairman of the Scottish Conservatives who is opposed to the proposed Internal Market Bill which threatens the powers of the devolved parliaments of Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
So far, so bad.
What I find really frightening is the appointment of former Australian prime minister, Tony Abbott as a trade advisor in post Brexit negotiations between the UK and potential trading partners.
The current edition of Private Eye identifies him as being a member of the far right UK thinktank Initiative for Free Trade.
This organisation has jointly published a document, Ideal US-UK Trade Deal, with the Cato Institute a right wing American thinktank.
The report encourages setting up foreign competition in fields including food production and health care.
This means that farmers, food producers, the NHS and UK pharmaceutical companies would be open to predation by US conglomerates and financial institutions.
With a poundland Trump in Number 10 being advised by Tony Abbott and Dominic Cummings what can possibly go wrong?
Limit testing to most vulnerable
Sir, – Covid is a coronavirus. The common cold and flu are also coronaviruses.
Why therefore are we having mass testing for one virus but not the other two, both of which are more widespread?
As we move from autumn into winter the government campaign telling everyone to get a test will overwhelm the system, as most people will misinterpret cold and flu symptoms.
Testing must be limited to care homes and hospitals.
The aim of health and welfare is to stop deaths, so efforts have to be targeted at the most vulnerable with low immunity, and underlying health issues.
In a normal winter most people are exposed to cold and flu viruses and as they get low doses they build up immunity and only the most vulnerable with the lowest immunity end up hospitalised with flu.
That is why Sweden is not experiencing the growth of new Covid cases that the rest of Europe is experiencing as they had no lockdown and no face covering requirement.
Their population have been exposed to low doses of Covid and their immune systems can cope so only mild cases are recorded with negligible numbers in hospital.