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As greenhouse gases increase, jet stream waves and the weather are going to be more persistent also.

This past winter (2016-17) saw weeks of temperatures far above the average in the Arctic, where sea ice set a record for low extent for the third year in a row. Because bare ground heats up faster than a reflective white shield of snow, northern latitudes are now warming much faster than mid-latitudes, and the temperature contrast is decreasing. That causes weather patterns to slow down or get stuck.

Additionally, pine bark beetles have steadily migrated northward all around the warming northern areas. Record numbers of dead trees have resulted, 169 million in California. Consequently, record forest fires are occurring all around the northern hemisphere.

CARL FLEGAL

Santa Rosa

Sticker shock

EDITOR: I want to personally thank the City Council of Santa Rosa for the gift I received last week. The new garbage bill for our business: $250.14. Last month’s bill was $78.10 from Santa Rosa Recycling. What a great job the council is doing supporting businesses in the city of Santa Rosa. I can’t wait to get a bill for our home service.

CATHY PORTERFIELD

Santa Rosa

A state single-payer plan

EDITOR: Access to good, affordable health care is a life-or-death issue. Yet in Washington, congressional Republicans have ripped apart the fabric of the Affordable Care Act without regard for the millions who will lose health coverage.

Meanwhile in Sacramento, Democrats in the state Assembly have shelved a bill that was passed by the Senate last June. The Healthy California Act aims to protect Californians from Washington’s whims by establishing an enhanced Medicare-for-all system in our state.

Every resident would be covered, and a fiscal study shows that cutting the insurance industry out of the health care equation could save the state $40 billion a year. And with no more insurance premiums, co-pays or deductibles, nearly all individuals and businesses would save on health care.

Thanks to state Sen. Mike McGuire for co-authoring the Healthy California Act. And Assemblyman Jim Wood, it’s time to get off the fence and get behind the bill. Your constituents are watching — and will vote accordingly come November.

If you want to know more about the Healthy California Act, check out HealthyCA.org.

MARYANN LONG

Healdsburg

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