In medicine, there are Band-Aids and cures. Usually both are required to keep the patient safe. Same is true for the climate change illness (“Our View: Ignoring climate change puts Mainers in danger,” Aug. 14).

Yes, Gov. LePage has been shortsighted in regard to ticks. And, yes, our state needs to adapt to the warming we are experiencing. But if Maine avoids doing its share to quickly reduce the fossil fuel-burning behavior that is causing the illness, science tells us the patient will get much sicker.

Climate change cures are within our reach, and all of them need to be urgently embraced. One of the most promising is putting a national tax on carbon. Carbon fee and dividend, as proposed by the nonpartisan Citizens’ Climate Lobby, would return the proceeds of the fee to American households on a fair per capita basis to spend as they wish. The result of a carbon fee? A major study concluded that carbon fee and dividend will reduce greenhouse gas emissions 52 percent below 1990 levels within 20 years, grow the economy, and save lives. It can work side by side with the many other health-restoring therapies we are beginning to embrace.

Applying Band-Aids alone is a recipe for a sorry future. We face a developing crisis that requires leadership from our elected representatives. Sen. Susan Collins, Sen. Angus King and the rest of the Maine delegation need to get out front on pricing carbon.

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