Re: “Catastrophic die-off of right whales in New England, Canadian waters puzzles scientists” (Aug. 15):

I am worried by this unprecedented die-off of rare right whales off the coast of New England and Canada. As touched on in the article, obvious or sudden changes in a population are often indicative of a larger issue we’ve yet to discover.

There are multiple theories about this particular die-off, but most troubling is that it could be an issue originating at the bottom of the food chain. This could disrupt delicate balances within the entire food web and may be a sign of future population changes or die-offs to come in other seemingly unrelated species.

This is why we need funding for research. We need to understand what is happening in our changing ecosystems and anticipate as much of the change as possible so we can prepare for it. We must be ready to adapt as our shift in climate continues.

We should not allow our president to cut critical funding to the Environmental Protection Agency and other important research and environmental institutions. Urge our Maine senators to reject President Trump’s budget, which proposes significant cuts to the EPA. The climate is changing – it is up to us whether we choose to act or react as these changes come upon us.

Julia Gesensway

Environment Maine

Portland