Facebook Twitter

Letter: Prayers are good, but we can do more to lessen the drought

SHARE Letter: Prayers are good, but we can do more to lessen the drought
A fire danger sign is shown reading “High” in City Creek Canyon in Salt Lake City as two people walk by.

Julie Beekman and Sam Hubert walk in City Creek Canyon in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, May 26, 2021. Utah faces increased wildfire risk as 100% of the state is in drought with 90% in extreme drought.

Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

With Utah experiencing one of its worst droughts ever, Gov. Spencer Cox has called for prayers for rain. While prayers are welcome, God helps those who help themselves.

Unfortunately, we haven’t been doing ourselves any favors in Utah. The changing climate is exacerbating droughts by increasing evaporation and making precipitation more sporadic. The state still doesn’t have a serious climate policy and continues to prop up fossil fuels while pursuing shortsighted projects like the Lake Powell pipeline.

If we really want to protect ourselves (and invite divine assistance), we need to reduce climate-disrupting emissions. We also need to adapt to the changing climate through greater water conservation, cooling infrastructure, and protecting fragile ecosystems.

The Utah Roadmap, created by stakeholders from across the state, offers a place to start. It calls for cutting carbon emissions in half by 2030, supporting rural Utah as our economy transitions to clean energy, and exploring market-based solutions like carbon pricing.

Droughts like the current one will continue to threaten Utah, but we can lessen the damage they cause. If God helps those who help themselves, it’s time to do our part.

Anders Hart

Salt Lake City