Staying home to mitigate the spread of COVID 19 has shown us that using less fossil fuel clears skies of pollution and cleans waters for sea life. Transportation though is not the only way greenhouse gases are emitted into our atmosphere, and we need a working economy as we transition away from the use of fossil fuels. We need a systemic approach to battle climate change that is good for people and good for our economy. We now see what happens when we are unprepared for a global crisis. That’s why we need to accelerate the transition from fossil fuels to non-carbon energy sources so we can avert a global climate catastrophe.
The 100 members of Citizens’ Climate Lobby Chestertown Chapter would like to thank the Chestertown Council for voting to endorse the bipartisan Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act of 2019 (H.R. 763) at the Chestertown Mayor and Council meeting on May 18th. Their vote is a vote to create a systemic shift in our culture through putting a fee on carbon as it is pulled out of our earth and giving the proceeds of those fees to households as a dividend to promote the transition to renewable energy.
It is a great show of leadership from the Council to formally vote to say that we need federal legislation for climate action. HR 763, is active now in the House of Representatives and has 81 co-sponsors. Our town’s endorsement joins endorsements from 110 other local governments, 658 businesses, 6 tribal entities, 105 faith groups (including Chester River Meeting), 14 colleges (including Washington College), 174 non-profits (including ShoreRivers), and many prominent individuals including our local Elizabeth Salett, President, O.L.P. Foundation, and Dr. James Hansen, the Former Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies who warned Congress about climate change in 1988.
Citizens’ Climate Lobby is a non-partisan, non-profit education and advocacy organization that works with volunteers across our nation and the world to develop the political will for climate action. While we all need to become more resilient and adapt because climate action wasn’t taken earlier, we also recognize that preventing further heat trapping gases from entering our atmosphere requires large systemic change. This bipartisan bill gives us that opportunity by making fossil fuel companies pay for the external cost of using their product. They have been benefiting from pulling the resource out of our earth, and we’ve all been paying for it with costs to our health and our economy, with polluted air, rising sea- levels, eroding coastlines, stronger storms, and more hot days. It is important to remember that adaption to the effects of climate change is expensive and Federal grants are really taxpayer dollars.
Your business or nonprofit can endorse this bill as well! Endorsements send a strong message to our representatives that we want climate action. The changing salinity, increasing acidity and temperature of our waters is changing conditions for our watermen, flooding and salt water intrusion are affecting our farmers, and coastal properties are losing value. Endorsing this bill and creating the political will for climate action takes little time but is very significant.
Citizens’ Climate Lobby will be lobbying Representative Andy Harris on June 17th to let him know we want him to cosponsor the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act(H.R. 763). Please support us by calling his office and letting him know you want this too.
Citizens’ Climate Lobby Group Leader and Liaison to Representative Andy Harris
Letters to Editor
Joseph Diamond says
Letter to the editor:
What, Kent County is emerging from the dark ages ? The sign on the door says agricultural county….no questions. Kent County is electrified by coal generators in Delaware. The dead and sicken citizens near these plants are bought and paid for. Solar Energy came knocking on the Kent County Planning and Zoning office door years ago……….proposals were proposed….plans were planned and the decision was five acres in “industrial zoned settings ” was all that could happen . The presentation against the solar zoning change was so impressive the executives of Community Solar just packed and left.
Their offer to electrify the county with solar energy was rejected in such a well rehearsed way no further attempts were considered. The next week they turned on a 1000 acre system in lower Virginia. Their visit to Kent County cost them enough to keep them from making more attempts.
By all means Keep Kent County Scenic…….remember that one ? There is a well organized faction that just resist change here. Should a farmer decide to line out a few hundred acres of crop land for solar panels there is a law on the books that causes him to either pay for or plant trees even though no trees would be cut.
Even though crop fields here have been established for over a century at the last consideration of the issue Billy Crowding, a zoning board member, asked about drainage and runoff. Just because no grading changes were applied for didn’t mean things can’t be questioned. At the same meeting it was considered relevant that without lots of crop land in use it would be hard to keep people nearby to fix milking machines ! At the end of that meeting solar energy left.
AND so….Good luck to the plan to liaison with Andy Harris. I enjoy his communications regarding support for President Trump. Dr. Harris is doing as ordered. Those votes along party lines are going well. Andy is going to have problems helping with the solar issues, however. Currently there is a former coal lobbyist, David Barnhardt, as acting head of the Trump Interior Department. The Trump Environmental Protection Agency is equally filled with coal and oil representatives and former lobbyists. The best that can be said is that the coal ash from the generator plants will not end up in Maryland rivers.
Hope Clark says
Thank you for your comments.!Join us on Sat June 13th for the Virtual Conference, A Community Stronger than COVID https://citizensclimatelobby.org/2020-june-conference/?_ga=2.24961594.1408641354.1591017702-438272113.1550522304 with Sen. Michael Braun a Republican Senator for Indiana, co-chairman of the Senate Climate Solutions Caucus. As Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety, Senator Braun held one of the first Senate hearings on climate in the last several years, entitled “Reducing Emissions While Driving Economic Growth.” In 2019 Senator Braun co-founded the bipartisan Senate Climate Solution Caucus with Senator Chris Coons. Sen. Chris Coons, a Democratic Senator for Delaware and co-chairman of the Senate Climate Solutions Caucus. In the 115th Congress, Senator Coons introduced the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, the first bipartisan carbon pricing bill to be introduced in the U.S Senate in over ten years. Senator Coons has introduced a second carbon pricing bill, the Climate Action Rebate Act, in the 116th Congress. In 2019 Senator Coons co-founded the bipartisan Senate Climate Solution Caucus with Senator Braun. Also, Former U.S. Rep. Carlos Curbelo who represented south Florida (FL 26th District) in the US House from 2015 through 2019. As a RepublicanCongressman, he was a co-founder of the Climate Solutions Caucus in the House and introduced the Market Choice Act to put a price on carbon emissions and invest nearly a trillion dollars in American infrastructure while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Mr. Curbelo has consistently advocated for decency, sobriety, and civility in politics. He was ranked the fourth most bipartisan member of the House until returning to the private sector in 2019.
David Sheetas says
Of course Congressman A. Harris does not endorse such a pro climate change mandate or need for change…
Hope Clark says
Hi David, we are working to develop political will for climate action. You are welcome to join us! I find it inspiring that Sen. Michael Braun, a Trump supporter and someone that Trump supported has stepped up to co-found the bipartisan Senate Climate Solution Caucus with Senator Chris Coons. I also think it is important to remember that Representative Harris is the person we collectively voted into office and until we have collectively voted someone else into that office, that is who we must work with. Imagine all businesses, municipalities, non-profits, and individuals in MD01 coming together to say, WE WANT CLIMATE ACTION! Something we have seen happen since we have lobbied Congressman Harris is more than $270,000 in Renewable Energy awarded to Eastern Shore Small Businesses and Farms https://harris.house.gov/media/press-releases/harris-announces-more-270000-renewable-energy-awards-eastern-shore-small Congressman Harris made the following statement: “Energy conservation is important to the health of the environment and our economy. As a member of the Agriculture and Rural Development Subcommittee of the Committee on Appropriations, I applaud the investment of these federal funds on the Eastern Shore. I will continue working to ensure that our small towns and rural communities receive help to grow and thrive with modern technologies. These awards will save energy, reduce electricity bills, and help make the Eastern Shore more economically competitive.”