Drastic Action Needed

Tom Fellows, Lewiston

The Lewiston Tribune 12/21/14

Recently three individuals, one being Walt Minnick, formed The Partnership for Responsible Growth (see http://www.partnershipforresponsiblegrowth.org).

Its purpose is to lobby Congress to approve a carbon tax on fossil fuels.  After reading the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report on climate change titled “Risky Business,” they believed doing nothing could result in an uninhabitable planet.  They wrote: “This is not the legacy any of us wish to bequeath to our children and grandchildren.”

They stated the reports said without acting now the world “may have as little as 15 years” to keep the planet’s temperature at a tolerable level.  They failed to mention that all of the IPCC reports have underestimated the rate at which the climate is changing.  They also believe that “carbon-funded tax-cuts” will solve the problems caused by carbon emissions.

While I endorse their project, I don’t believe the scientific data and history support their optimism.  A carbon tax by itself will not solve the problem.  The best place to confront the problem of greenhouse gas emissions is at the “wellhead/mine,” rather than the “tailpipe/smokestack” as the carbon tax will do.

What is needed in addition to a carbon tax is a cap on the production of fossil fuels.  As of 2015, no new oil/gas wells should be drilled or mines started, and then the production should be decreased by ten percent per year.  The decrease rate of the more carbon intensive fuels should be greater than ten percent.

For the well-being of our grandchildren, we need drastic action now.

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