Nuclear Energy and the Greenhouse Effect

The article ``White House Gears Up for Assault on Global Warming,'' Nov. 3, says that some feel that the White House is trying to derail the assault on global warming and acid rain. If the energy needed for heating, operating computers, and propelling vehicles was provided by nuclear energy, the greenhouse effect wouldn't be so urgent. Solar and wind sources can provide small amounts of electricity, and hydropower is capable of even more; conservation can moderate the energy demand somewhat. But only nuclear energy has enough potential to meet increasing demands while combating global warming.

How ironic that the most vociferous critics of the Bush administration's slow response to global warming are the same people who oppose nuclear energy and the administration's support of it. With nuclear energy we'll be able to get away from burning of fossil fuels. R. Murray Campbell, Cohasset, Mass.

A grainy debate Regarding the interview ``World Food Supply Faces Threats,'' Oct. 31, with Worldwatch Institute director Lester Brown:

Yes, the US did have a drought year in '88, and perhaps grain reserves did fall 100 million tons last year, but it was not all due to the drought. The US government's agricultural policies are designed to reduce grain production.

The US sells millions of tons of grain to the Russians. There are thousands of acres of land lying fallow in the United States. In a real food shortage, this land could be cultivated. And even if US grain supplies are short, the US can buy from the large grain surpluses in Canada.

The starvation in Africa is more a matter of political obstructionism than lack of food. Donald Bradley, Plainfield, N.H.

Before the `silent spring' The article ``Organic Farming Puts Down Roots,'' Nov. 7, says that ``growing without [synthetic chemical pesticides and fertilizers] is not new; it came into limited vogue in the 1960s ....'' In fact, organic farming was the dominant practice in all farming societies up to the 20th century. It's farming with these chemicals that is new. Rita Buchanan, Newton, Conn., Associate Editor, Fine Gardening Magazine

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