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Letter: Protecting environment should be a top priority

Protecting environment should be a top priority

Efforts are underway in Washington to roll back numerous environmental regulations and protections. To see what the effects of this might be, look at two rapidly developing economies – China and India. Their headlong rush for development at any cost has led to rampant air and water pollution. I have traveled to both countries and have seen firsthand dangerous levels of air contaminants in the cities of New Delhi and Beijing, and have seen the Yangtze River in China and the Ganges River in India choked with refuse and uncontrolled runoffs.

We can “think globally” in terms of worldwide climate change, but also can “act locally” to protect the environment and repair environmental damage. In New York State, the long-term cleanup of the Hudson River can serve as an example. In Clarence, where I live, town leaders have made a long-term commitment to supporting agriculture and open space and to promoting environmental health and sustainability. The town’s Greenprint Program has helped protect more than 1,300 acres of wildlife habitat, forests and working farms.

If there are unnecessary, unproductive regulations, revise them. But this is a case of “not throwing the baby out with the bath water.” The baby in this instance is clean air and water, great assets our country possesses, protected for decades by environmental regulations.

To demonstrate my commitment to the environment, I will be heading to Washington for a march for science and the environment on Earth Day, April 22. Why not check it out online and considering joining in?

Robert Poczik


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