On May 22, the island community of Vinalhaven endorsed carbon fee and dividend as a major measure to mitigate climate change. The islanders have seen that shifts in climate are already bringing higher sea levels to the island’s low-lying main street and intensifying storms demanding larger culverts.

Vinalhaven’s Board of Selectmen thus joins the city councils in Portland and Bangor and the town of Fairfield in endorsing the measure, which would place a national price on the carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions and return net proceeds to all U.S. households. Several other towns are considering the measure.

Climate scientists agree that these fossil fuel emissions are driving the changes we are all observing in Maine’s forests, farms, weather and waters. Research shows that the simple, market-based measure of a constantly rising price on carbon dioxide emissions and their equivalents will drive down the use of fossil fuels below our Paris accord goals.

The resolution urging Congress to adopt carbon fee and dividend is being sponsored locally and throughout the country by Citizens’ Climate Lobby. We are a nonpartisan group of volunteers meeting regularly with almost all members of Congress.

A similar measure has a 10-year history in British Columbia, where it has produced the results predicted for the U.S.: higher than average economic growth with a reduction in fossil fuel use. It has proved so popular in that Canadian province that voters there just approved even higher prices on carbon pollution.

To support this measure in your municipality, contact us through CitizensClimateLobby.org.

Also, urge our U.S. Reps. Chellie Pingree and Bruce Poliquin to join the House’s Climate Solutions Caucus, a strictly bipartisan group working together for climate change solutions.

Peter Monro