The dire effects of Hurricane Harvey are staggering and still not fully known.

Extreme weather events will become more common as the planet warms, climate scientists say. If nothing is done to ease the effects of climate change, we are looking at disastrous consequences for rich and poor, young and old, people of every political persuasion, here and across the globe.

Drought, wildfires, the spread of diseases that used to be kept in check by colder temperatures, terrible marine losses, sea-level rise that threatens our coastal cities, and the social upheaval that limited resources bring, including mass migration – this is what we are already facing.

Some politicians ignore the overwhelming scientific consensus on the human contribution to climate change. They are playing with our lives and the lives of our children.

Congress would do well to consider the legislation proposed by the Citizens Climate Lobby. CCL proposes a fee at the source on all carbon pollution produced in this country, with revenues returned to the public.

In this time of deep political divides, this market-based proposal has the potential to garner support from both sides of the aisle.

Several Mainers – unpaid citizens concerned for the future of the state and country – are meeting with U.S Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King, and U.S. Reps. Chellie Pingree and Bruce Poliquin and their staffs to discuss this carbon fee-and-dividend proposal. This is a citizens’ initiative, democracy at its best.

Look into the work of CCL in your Maine community, check out its fair and nonpartisan approach by going to the website for FAQ: citizensclimatelobby.org.

Take part by making your thoughts known to your representatives. Write letters, tweet your concerns. Keep talking to your legislators to let them know climate change needs to be addressed now – for the future of everyone, regardless of political persuasion.

Nancy Heiser

member, Brunswick chapter of Citizens Climate Lobby

Brunswick