In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, uncertainty overtook us. Would the virus spread to our Happy Valley? What did this mean for day-to-day life? Uncertainty showed up at our grocery stores, with panicked neighbors navigating empty shelves to stock up on food; something I’ve never witnessed before. Though plenty of uncertainty remains, our grocery store shelves are full again, and farmers continue their essential work, though some have struggled. Nationally we’ve seen infection outbreaks and processing disruptions hit, but still, our food supply… Read More »Climate watch: With support, Pennsylvania’s farmers can deliver climate solutions
Op-Eds and Letters
By Edward Cullen About 30 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, which are largely responsible for global warming, come from gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles. To limit global warming, we need to develop and use electric vehicles (EVs), which don’t produce greenhouse gases. In 2019, there were 326,644 electric cars sold in the US, representing 1.9 percent of the 17,053,566 car sales that year (up from 0.6 percent in 2013). Progress is clearly being made with passenger EVs. Trucks are more of a challenge because they move heavier loads. Lordstown Motors, operating at the site of the former GM Lordstown Plant, recently unveiled its prototype for an electric pickup truck. Lordstown plans to make vehicles available for sale in 2021. Tesla, Ford, and GM are also developing commercial vans or pickup trucks. There are several ways to build… Read More »Letter: Making Progress with EVs
By Richard W. Jones Sixty-one percent of Pennsylvania households would see a net financial benefit if the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (EICDA) becomes law. And the gain would be greater than the state average for most families in the 12th and 15th Congressional Districts. Those are among the findings by a team of MBA students from Duquesne University’s Palumbo-Donovan School of Business. Passage of the act would also create jobs, they found. Read more at Centre Daily Times.
By Dan Alters The last time carbon dioxide levels were this high, trees were growing at the South Pole. A shocking line, but true. A recent National Geographic article reports on these facts and more. And what does it all mean? Well, unless something is done to reverse the course of greenhouse gas emissions, many birds of the northern hemisphere are marked for extinction, according to the National Audubon Society. And humans? More on that later. Read more at Centre Daily Times.
By Edward Cullen Two dams near Midland, Michigan failed this month after record rains, with 4.7 inches falling over 48 hours. Dow Chemical activated the emergency plan for its headquarters and production facilities in Midland, and reported that floodwaters were commingling with containment ponds at the site. There were concerns about effects of flooding on an associated US EPA SuperFund site just downriver of the Dow facility. Thousands of people were ordered to evacuate their homes. This sad and worrisome news is relevant to us.… Read More »Letter: Urge Passage of Bill to Fight Climate Change in PA
Who could’ve imagined a global crisis larger than climate change? But here we are sheltering in place to curtail a virus. How can we overcome our biggest challenges even though we’re sequestered at home, like climate change, and other environmental and humanitarian causes challenges that haven’t evaporated along with our day-to-day lives? Good news: there’s much that we can do from our couch and kitchens. Here are some ideas: 1. Work on climate change The revenue-neutral Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, or H.R.763 allocates fees collected… Read More »Climate Watch: Saving the world while sheltering in place
By Sylvia Neely This year marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. A lot has changed since April 22, 1970. At that time, on college campuses, people against the Vietnam War were holding “teach-ins” to explain why they were opposed. Sen. Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin decided to adopt this idea by holding “teach-ins” on the environment on college campuses. The original name was “Environmental Teach-In.” And they chose April 22 because they wanted a date before the students left for the semester. But the idea… Read More »Opinion: On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, much has changed
By Richard Jones Govtrack lists 240 legislative initiatives in the 116th U.S. Congress dealing with climate change or greenhouse gases. One bill, however, is easily the most robust climate legislation pending and the only bipartisan one with significant support. It’s not the Green New Deal, which is a non-binding resolution and not a bill at all. Rather, it’s the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (H.R. 763). In this legislation, Congress has before it a simple, fair and effective step toward a climate solution. Rep.… Read More »Opinion: Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act gains support inside and outside Congress
By Dick Jones If you took all the coal miners in the United States and sat them in Beaver Stadium the place would be under half full. There were about 53,000 people working in the coal business in the U.S. in August 2019. That includes not just miners but office workers, maintenance and other coal support personnel, according to a report by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. By contrast, there were 242,300 Americans working in solar energy alone in 2018, says the Solar… Read More »Opinion: The movement to renewable energy is irreversible
By Edward Cullen The financial community is taking climate change more seriously than ever. Larry Fink, the CEO of BlackRock, the largest financial asset management firm in the world, recently wrote to the companies in BlackRock’s portfolio. He told them that BlackRock now considers climate change to be a defining factor for companies’ long-term prospects. Read more at Centre Daily Times.