On Tuesday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced part of his vision to protect students from the coronavirus. Chiefly among them is proper air ventilation. Some researchers have found this can reduce the spread of the highly contagious virus.
Keeping windows open is a no-brainer, then. Right? Well, until winter rolls around. New York regularly sees cold-arse winter days. De Blasio, however, isn’t too worried. According to Spectrum News, de Blasio told reporters on Tuesday that global warming would bring enough days where teachers could open classroom windows this winter. You read that right: The mayor’s solution to winter-time classroom safety during a pandemic is good old global warming.
“I hate to say it, but the winters aren’t the winters we used to know, so we’re going to have a number of days throughout the year where you can have the windows open in a way that works because this is global warming in action, unfortunately,” de Blasio said during a presser.
The mayor does clarify that some days will still be cold, but all he says is, “we’re going to have to be smart about that.” WTF does that mean?! It’s also important to note that the climate crisis is not a matter of fortune. This crisis is a result of decades of failed government action. That includes New York under de Blasio’s watch where he’s been slow to implement policies to cut emissions from New York’s biggest source (buildings) and loves to ride around in a cushy arse SUV.
Anyway, yes, climate change will bring warmer temperatures across the globe, including in New York. That does not mean, however, that temperatures will always be warmer across the board. This global rise in temperatures can lead to a number of different weather scenarios, even extreme cold. New York winters will not immediately (or possibly ever!) stop having brutal cold snaps.
Just last year, New York City experienced Squallmaedon. Imagine having your classroom window open during that hellish snowstorm. Extreme snow may become more common in a warmer world because of all the moisture our warming oceans release into the atmosphere. De Blasio apparently has no idea how global warming works, or he wouldn’t be so flippant to count on global warming to help keep classrooms ventilated during a pandemic (which took a huge toll on the city this past spring, by the way). So let me be clear. No, Mr. Mayor. You cannot rely on global warming to make sure classrooms have proper ventilation during the wintertime.
Global warming doesn’t automatically mean winters will be warm. They may be warmer, but that doesn’t mean classrooms should keep windows open during these cold arse months. After all, the last thing students need to catch during a global health crisis is a cold!
This de Blasio statement feels strangely similar to President Donald Trump, who loves to tweet climate denial whenever temperatures drop across the U.S. In both cases, it’s irresponsible as hell.
Let’s hope De Blasio puts an actual plan together before wintertime. The kids have suffered enough for our leaders’ failures. They deserve a safe education — without catching a virus, a cold, or climate misinformation.