top of page

To the Editor

It’s distressing to read about the decline of the monarch butterfly population. I, like Chris Henderson, can remember when a teacher brought in a chrysalis and how, each day, upon arrival in class, we ran to see if the butterfly had emerged. Even as an adult, I am fascinated by the transformation and in awe of the many thousand-mile migration of these delicate creatures.

Henderson was right to point out the human impact on the collapse. Loss of habitat due to pesticide use is huge. However, another human caused problem is of far greater concern. Catastrophic climate change caused by the extraction, transmission, and burning of fossil fuels is already disrupting the life cycle of the monarch.

These climate disruptions, sadly, pose an existential threat to life forms – including humans. It seems that not a day goes by that we aren’t dealing with another 1000-year flood or drought, raging wildfires or record temperatures. We are even facing a crisis at our border because climate refugees are fleeing the devastation in their home places.

Our children and grandchildren will not live in the same world that we live in.

We in the Oil Region have reaped the benefits of the fossil economy, but we have also paid a steep price. For the 45+ years that I have lived here, we have hemorrhaged jobs and young people, but also seen less snow, a decimation of the eastern hemlock, and more tick borne Lyme disease.  

To save the monarchs – and ourselves – we must wean ourselves from fossil fuels, build resilient local economies, and get rid of the notion that infinite growth is a good thing.

Michael Bagdes-Canning

Cherry Valley


Editor’s Note: Opinions expressed in “Letters to the Editor” are not necessarily those of the Progress News, the Editor or any of its staff.

All letters to the editor must be signed, dated, name of town, brief and to the point to be considered for publication. 450 words or less. Letters can be sent to:

Editor, c/o The Progress News, P.O. Box A, Emlenton, PA 16373

4 views0 comments


bottom of page