Letter: A Livable Planet Is At Stake

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I am writing to encourage Laguna Beach residents to communicate to City Council members that they should endorse HR 763, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, at the Sept. 8 City Council meeting. This national legislation will counter global warming, address air pollution, and benefit our city.

Global warming due to the burning of fossil fuels is already starting to cause untold harm, and this is only going to accelerate. The devastation affecting California will impact our agricultural community, our coastlines, wildfire risks and major flooding, and more.

What’s at stake here is a livable planet. This is the most crucial decade in the history of mankind.

The best method of quickly reducing heat-trapping carbon emissions is to impose a carbon fee that reflects the costs to all members of society that the use of fossil fuels causes, which the fossil fuel companies have avoided over the last century. Even the free market ideologue, Milton Friedman, endorsed a pollution tax for this purpose.

HR 763 is a cost-effective, equitable, border-adjusted, revenue-neutral method that would accelerate the transition to a green energy grid more quickly than any other intervention, without causing economic disruption or growing government.

Consider this as well: HR 763 would be worth doing even if climate change was not happening! Air pollution alone is reason enough.

Multiple careful studies on air pollution have repeatedly confirmed the massive benefits of transitioning away from fossil fuels. The health effects and related costs of air pollution are much higher than previously thought, and the savings from addressing the burning of fossil fuels, just in terms of the effects of air pollution, are enough to pay for the transition to a cleaner world, while simultaneously creating jobs and saving lives.

These benefits happen even if the rest of the world does not participate, and they happen quickly.

The article to read to address this may be found at: Air Pollution and Health – A Science-Policy Initiative. Annals of Global Health, 85(1), p.140.

The pandemic, terrible as it is, is very short-term compared to climate change. Let us not be totally distracted by it. About 5% of this crucial decade has already passed.

Laguna Beach has an especially beautiful and inviting environment, and our leadership must support steps to preserve it on a long-term basis. The economic well-being of our city is also at stake.

Gary Stewart, Laguna Beach

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1 COMMENT

  1. Thousands of scientists dissent from the claim of human caused global warming. Tens of thousands. This would not be possible if it were as “established” as its promoters claim. Simply google climate change fraud and watch the hundreds of videos and lectures explaining the waste of trillions of dollars which will accomplish nothing.

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