LETTER: Earlier apathy no argument against future worry

In the case of oil transportation on our coast, Fletcher has admitted that oil spill response is inadequate...

Re: British Columbia oil spill study misinterpreted, Oct. 24.

My response to Tom Fletcher’s various articles on oil energy use, oil transportation, and related issues is as predictable as his position on the topics.

Although, he often doesn’t seem to take a position except by taking issue with those who have issues with the whole business. His column suggests that if no one has been concerned about our terribly inadequate spill response capability while bulk crude-laden tankers have plied our coast for the past 40 years, then they have no business being concerned about new tankers entering the waterways.

It seems to me that on just about any topic that becomes a public concern, there is a history about which we at first know little or nothing, followed by a growing awareness, which at some point hits the radar, and then the fan. Citing earlier ignorance or apathy is no argument against the expressions of present or future concern.

In the case of oil transportation on our coast, Fletcher has admitted that oil spill response is inadequate. My response, therefore, is to say that now we have woken up, we should take two positions: beef up our response capabilities to be able to better handle existing traffic, which is now a fact of life; and don’t multiply the probability of an accident by adding new traffic.

Ken Summers