Time for Congress To Do Its Part To Curb Climate Change

American businesses are taking serious steps to curb climate change.

General Motors recently announced that it plans to be carbon neutral by 2040 by making 40 percent of its US models battery-run by 2025, and powering 100% of its US facilities from renewable energy by 2035 (https://plants.gm.com/media/us/en/gm/news.detail.print.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2021/jan/0128-carbon.html).

BlackRock, the world’s largest investment management firm, reported that investments in renewable energy funds increased more than 91% from 2019 to 2020. BlackRock stated that climate risk is investment risk, and urged companies to incorporate assessments of climate risk, and plans for resilience, into their formal company plans (https://www.blackrock.com/corporate/investor-relations/larry-fink-ceo-letter).

The US Chamber of Commerce recognizes the urgent need for action on climate change, and believes that Congress should implement durable policies that include market-based mechanisms (https://www.uschamber.com/climate-change-position). An excellent candidate for this approach is the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, which charges a fee on fossil fuels when they enter the economy, and returns the revenue to US taxpayers. The proposed fee starts low, at $15 per ton of carbon dioxide produced (about 12 cents a gallon of gasoline, for example), and rises annually by about $10 to $15 per ton, depending on emissions. Military and agricultural uses are exempted from the fee. Economists predict that the bill will decrease greenhouse gas emissions by 36 to 38% over 10 years, thus curbing climate change.

Call or write your members of Congress and ask them to pass this bill.

Edward Cullen, State College

This article originally appeared in the Centre Daily Times.

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