LI must come together to prevent flood damage

For decades, planners have warned of Long Island’s vulnerability to hurricanes. Jun-Kai Teoh’s op-ed, “Mapping flood risks for Long Island” [Opinion, Sept. 14]can help visualize these real risks — but unfortunately, even such mapping may not be enough.

In 1984, the Long Island Regional Planning Board, armed with government funding from FEMA, developed a detailed Hurricane Damage Mitigation Plan for the South Shore of Nassau and Suffolk Counties.

The report reaches the alarming conclusion that the region is “vulnerable to storm-related damage and potential loss of life,” and urges substantive policy actions to prevent coastal development.

In the years since, we’ve witnessed the cost of not heeding these warnings, thanks to the damage caused by high-profile hurricane events like 1985’s Hurricane Gloria and 2012’s superstorm Sandy. Today, even so-called regular thunderstorm activity causes significant impact – and the ferocity of such events will continue to grow.

Localities must recognize that our region faces ever-increasing risks from the oceans that surround our island, and work together to continue to protect our communities from harm. The vitality of our beaches depends on it.

— Richard Murdocco, Commack

The writer is an adjunct professor of environmental policy at Stony Brook University’s public policy graduate program and School of Atmospheric and Marine Sciences.

Long Island is in for more flooding than previously thought, and we’re not alone. Nationwide, a study by Climate Central reports that 650,000 properties, or 4.4 million hectares, will be flooded by the year 2050.

Even before the first UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change sounded the warning of global warming in 1990, oil giants Shell and Exxon had internal reports from the 1980s predicting climate disaster.

We won’t listen to the fossil fuel companies that tell us we can’t cut the cord with dirty oil and gas. Their business depends on submerging our vision.

We need an urgent transition to renewable energy for cars, heating and cooling. The Inflation Reduction Act and state investment in wind and solar power, battery storage, heat pumps, and electric vehicles will get us there.

— Karen C. Higgins, Massapequa Park

Mapping flood risk by ZIP code is a very simple tool. It gives the key code by color which is not enough to check the real danger. While this study may be a first step, it needs more precision. Track data by block. That reduces demand and alarm to a more manageable level.

— Raymond Roel, East Northport

The problem with adding solar panels

It seems that the readers from East Hampton and Port Washington who write about the climate and the need for change are not aware of the concerns of the sun outside their cities. [“National Grid should stay in 21st century,” Letters, Sept. 13].

Most of Long Island’s makeup is lots of trees with average-sized houses on relatively small lots. Many of us do not have the roof space to install enough solar panels to support our entire electricity bill.

Other issues may be the cost of replacing an old roof or removing trees. That’s a luxury most of us can’t afford to buy solar.

If you want to achieve climate and energy goals, you need to create a solution for everyone.

– Tricia Schreck, East Meadow

The letter “Biden speech incurs blowback from right” Opinion, Sept. 6]I asked again, “Can people with different beliefs live in a democracy?”

I firmly believe that in the United States, it is possible.

In this democracy, we have different beliefs about God, when life begins, and about our sexuality. We may disagree, but we cannot eliminate differences by making laws that favor one point of view.

Our democracy depends on following the Constitution. The First Amendment prohibits our government from “making laws regulating an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise of religion.” If someone disagrees with me, it’s not OK for me to put them in jail.

The reader expresses his religious beliefs, which he considers correct and true. How is that a threat to democracy? A devout Christian or Jew or member of any faith is not a threat to democracy by believing in what they do. However, if he insists that all Americans must have the same beliefs — and laws are made to enforce a religious worldview — then our democracy is truly under attack.

— Linda D. Volkersz, Stony Brook

The writer is director of religious education emerita at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship at Stony Brook.

Yes, 9/11 was sad, and so was the war in Ukraine

Last Sunday’s recitation of the names of those who died on 9/11 was so sad that it sometimes brought tears to my eyes. 11]. But a sadder thought is that in Ukraine, every day is 9/11. And this is because of the ignorance of the human race. War is and always will be a funny concept, and I am a veteran of the Korean War. Nations hate and kill each other. Then, years later, we forgive and forget.

America targeted the North Vietnamese during the Vietnam War in the 1960s and ’70s, and today you can fly to Vietnam and have coffee at a table in a restaurant on the streets where Americans and Vietnamese died. For what?

I was a child during World War II when the Germans and Japanese were our enemies, but now they are our friends. That whole scenario doesn’t make sense. In the 36-day battle on Iwo Jima, nearly 7,000 Marines and about 20,000 Japanese died. For what?

Saddened by what happened on 9/11, and also saddened by the stupidity of war.

— John Procida, Flushing

Yet another case of deja vu

I enjoyed reading the articles on Sunday in Sept. 10, 1981 Classic Edition about redistricting and electric cars, and an opinion about the Moral Majority.

It brought me right back to today, 2022, because I’m currently reading articles about redistricting and electric vehicles, and opinion pieces about MAGA Republicans. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Where will we be in the next 40 years?

— James T. Rooney, Centerport

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