I would like to compliment South Portland for its progressive response to climate change. I just saw solar panels going up on the Community Center and was heartened. I know that South Portland is doing its part to combat climate change. (What? The climate is changing?)

All buildings, in every municipality, in South Portland, in all counties, in all of Maine, should be required to include solar panels, heat pumps and other energy efficiency improvements. Carbon offsets have not reduced carbon emissions. If we do not do our best to combat climate change, other pursuits will be null and void, because we will have destroyed our livable environment.

The only answer is for climate change mitigation to be mandated and funded, in international, federal, state, county and city laws, to fully prioritize this threat. Yes, it is expensive. (But what if it is not all about money?) I fear for the future of the coming generations. Will we destroy this planet with reactivity and self-absorption? A longer view than “can’t see it from my house” is needed. Unfortunately, most Americans live by the credo “But I want that, now!!” I don’t blame the next generation for being upset about our greed and denial.

Thank you, South Portland, for trying to mitigate what was possible and within our reach. It is not the answer, but seeing these solar panels on the Community Center made my day. If no one does anything, nothing happens.

Ellen Zimmerman
South Portland