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Climate change a serious issue that needs addressed [Letter]

ConservationEcosystemsAndrew P HarrisEnergy SavingRenewable EnergyAlternative Energy

Editor:

For many members of the millennial generation, the current political landscape has discouraged us from becoming involved in the political debate. From health care, to unemployment, and everything in between there seems to be a lack of appetite from our elders to solve some of our nation's biggest problems. Few issues in our nation's current political debate, however, seem to spark more disagreement than climate change. Although many of my fellow millennials, despite political party or ideology, agree that the climate indeed is changing, our political leadership appears unable to meet the challenges of combating this 21st Century problem. Here in Harford County our own Congressman, Andy Harris, has repeatedly denied that climate change is a real issue. Congressman Harris, as a member of the millennial generation and as a concerned citizen of this great country, we need leaders and elected officials that will help bring 21st Century solutions to 21st Century problems such as climate change.

In a recent town hall in Bel Air, the Congressman repeatedly stated how he was concerned about the future for younger Americans. While I appreciate Congressman Harris' concern, combating climate change would go a long way in securing a prosperous and healthy future for younger Americans. According to a recent study, 97 percent of scientists now agree that human activities are causing our planet's climate to change. In addition to growing consensus in the scientific community, politicians from both parties are now beginning to acknowledge the threat climate change presents to our nation. Within the last month, four former Republican EPA directors spoke out to make the case for a Republican plan to combat climate change. Although in this day of age, many political issues are turned into ideological battles. This is one issue our country cannot afford not to confront. With growing scientific consensus and bipartisan realization of climate change, it is time for leaders such as Rep. Harris to stand with younger Americans and combat the threat of climate change.

Finally, in an era were young Americans are struggling to find full time employment, combating climate change with a sensible energy policy will provide my generation with an economy that is built for prosperity in the 21st Century. Although many deny the existence of climate change insist that confronting this issue is bad for the economy. This claim couldn't be further from the truth. In fact, investing in renewable energies as a part of our energy policy will help maintain our country's position as a global economic leader. Additionally, Maryland currently has more than 90,000 people working in renewable energy or other green jobs. Also, from 2010 to 2011 the amount of Americans employed in green jobs grew by almost 5 percent. If our country is to remain as a global economic leader, it will be important that our elected officials invest in renewable energies and other green jobs. If Congressman Harris is serious about providing a better and more prosperous future for the millennial generation, then he must join the fight in combating climate change. Congressman Harris, my generation is depending on your generation of leaders to rise above partisan politics and combat the challenges that face our nation.

Gerard Neely

Forest Hill

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