In response to the recent articles on sea level rise, we believe a potential downturn in property values might be the least of our problems. NOAA’s prediction of a 2 foot median rise in Friday Harbor caused by the effects of climate change jives with the assessment of 97percent of all climate scientists that more frequent wildfires, longer periods of drought and heat waves, and an increase in the number, duration and intensity of tropical storms are all being caused or made worse by a release of too much CO2 into the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels.
So what can we do right now to have the largest impact? Economists across the political spectrum agree that the market-driven approach of taxing the use of fossil fuels is the most effective way to promote clean energy by making it more cost-effective. We tax the things we want less of (pollution) to encourage the things we want more of (clean air, reductions in effects of climate change). We support David Foutch’s recent request that the County Commission pass a resolution calling on Congress to enact carbon fee-and-dividend legislation along with County residents joining their voice with the Citizens Climate Lobby in support of this policy.
Recently, Governor Inslee released an ambitious carbon pricing plan. Senator Ranker has co-sponsored this bill and introduced his own version. Write or call your state representatives and tell them that you expect serious action on climate in this legislative session.
Several years ago our Governor said, “We’re the first generation to feel the impact of climate change and the last generation that can do something about it.” What legacy do we want to leave our grandchildren? If we continue on this trajectory, it is likely that those who follow us will pay a very steep price and suffer severe hardship.
Anyone coming to adulthood over the last 30 to 40 years needs to take personal responsibility for creating this enormous problem. Let’s take immediate steps to reduce our own carbon footprints as well as hold our local, state and federal governments accountable.
Ande & Scott Finley