I’m a grandparent deeply concerned about what climate change has in store for my grandchildren and future generations.

It was encouraging to read Gov. Mills’ recent pledge to address climate change. At least two pending Maine bills do that: L.D. 797 (which would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent from 1990 level by 2050), and L.D. 1282 (requiring electricity providers to have 80 percent of supply sources be nonrenewables by 2040). These are worthy goals. But we don’t have until 2040 or 2050. And we are only one of 50 states.

This is a national problem requiring national action now . We need to move ahead now with a plan to reduce carbon production nationwide. Bipartisan-sponsored H.R. 763, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, is that plan.

It sets forth a simple and straightforward plan that will help Maine and other farsighted states meet their goals. It will impose a fee on coal, gas and oil as they are extracted from the Earth to reduce carbon emissions by at least 40 percent within 12 years. Proceeds from the fees will be distributed as dividends to the American public to offset and, in many cases, even exceed increased costs resulting from carbon fee costs being passed along in the economy. This law will make it easier to accomplish our state goals.

So, let’s do what we can to help get this bill enacted into law. If they agree, I ask your readers to thank U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree for co-sponsoring H.R. 763 and ask Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King to indicate they will support it or join as co-sponsors of a similar bill in the Senate. This will help save the Earth as we know it for future generations.

Robert Stevens


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