Thank you to the Maine Sunday Telegram for the Sept. 17 editorial discussing the political reluctance to address climate change, despite the ever-increasing majority of concerned citizens who believe that our government should.

I am proud to report some good news on the subject. The Maine Medical Association general membership, at the annual meeting Sept. 9, voted to approve a climate change resolution that updates their 2009 strategy for addressing the public health threat here in Maine.

The resolution also urges Congress and the president to enact without delay a revenue-neutral carbon fee and dividend.

The latter has been demonstrated to be an effective policy for reducing carbon emissions while growing the economy, creating jobs and financially protecting lower and middle income households.

The MMA consists of some 3,700 doctors who have devoted their lives to the health and well-being of the people of Maine.

Members discussed how their patients are being affected by climate change-related illness, from asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, cardiovascular deaths, Lyme disease and heat illness to the more global effects of drought, starvation, flooding, mass migration, Zika virus and national security risks, and how these all affect the mental health of Maine people as well.

Recognizing that limiting the effects of climate change requires national and global action to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, and acknowledging the recommendations of the National Institutes of Health, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Physicians for Social Responsibility and the Lancet Commission, the MMA continues the mission of protecting the public health. As more voices join the effort, our government will have to listen.

Paul Potvin, M.D.