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Pastor: Climate change threat demands prompt action | READER COMMENTARY

Students march along Charles Street on their way from The Bryn Mawr School to the Inner Harbor in a call for action on climate change in September of 2019. (Jerry Jackson/Baltimore Sun).
Students march along Charles Street on their way from The Bryn Mawr School to the Inner Harbor in a call for action on climate change in September of 2019. (Jerry Jackson/Baltimore Sun). (Jerry Jackson/Baltimore Sun)

The Baltimore Sun’s editorial board was spot on in calling for the Maryland General Assembly to pass the Climate Solutions Now Act (”Upgrade Maryland’s climate action plan,” March 2). As the senior pastor of East Washington Heights Baptist Church and a resident of Upper Marlboro, I’ve seen both the devastation that climate change brings as well as the wonderful opportunities that arise when we properly care for God’s creation.

The devastation is real. Our state has seen record breaking floods, rising seas and brutal heat waves — all getting worse in the last decade. Worse still, all of these disasters fall hardest on our neighbors with the least resources. Yet we know that in responding to this crisis, a better world is possible.

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My church is part of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, the denomination of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. King helped us imagine the future described by the prophet Isaiah when all the inequality of our current world is redeemed. “One day,” he preached, “every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.”

The Climate Solutions Now Act would set about making the rough places straight by doing many of the same things that faith communities are doing all across our state: planting trees, choosing clean energy, supporting electric vehicles and making a plan to cut our climate pollution.

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I hope that Del. Dereck Davis, in his role as chair of the House Economic Matters Committee, will act swiftly to bring this bill up for a vote and pass it out of committee. Our neighbors in Upper Marlboro, and all across Maryland, depend on it.

Rev. Kip Banks, Upper Marlboro

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