We don’t care, say the dinos-men (letters, 16 July) about fossil fuels that are now believed to have brought about the extinction of most life on Earth 150m years ago. We don’t care because they were “too small” to help contribute to our survival. And we don’t care because science is widely understood to be a non-threatening source of information, compared with childish pseudo-medieval Christian exegesis which condemns all scientific advancement in the name of a futile struggle to remain clothed in the “white robes of God”.
• Graeme Smith’s piece on the catastrophic effect of air pollution on human health (Not just a blue badge for London: the danger from pollution – 22 July) provides an excellent glimpse of the threat posed by the coal-fired power stations that are now being permitted to remain. Given the increasing public disgust at the cavalier disregard for people’s health that these unnecessary and harmful emissions represent, this direction of travel cannot go unchallenged. Or can it?
• Nowadays the political and scientific organisations that are the custodians of our economic progress, like the UN and the IPCC, are readily able to create impressive graphs that demonstrate how the quantity of CO2 emitted per 100 gigatonnes of GDP has fallen in the aftermath of the industrial revolution but has since shot back up thanks to our world of modern vehicles (Criticism of UK’s gas use threatens efforts to cut greenhouse gases, says Lord Stern, 18 July). These graphs ignore, or never mention, the other ways in which the emission of CO2 by humans is so unhealthy and costly, such as the direct carcinogenic effect of our burning fossil fuels, the massive and destructive adverse health and social effects caused by other by-products of gas and industrial activity, and the huge indirect environmental cost we impose on our neighbours by leading the world in biodiversity loss and climate change. I wonder why green groups never raise these issues at public meetings.
Acton, West Sussex
• Join the debate – email [email protected]
• Read more Guardian letters – click here to visit gu.com/letters
• Do you have a photo you’d like to share with Guardian readers? Click here to upload it and we’ll publish the best submissions in the letters spread of our print edition