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Hogan should support fees on carbon emissions

2018 US Carbon Emissions Saw Biggest Rise in 8 Years A preliminary estimate published by the Rhodium Group reports a 2018 rise of 3.4 percent.

Talking points from Scott Dance’s article on Gov. Larry Hogan’s plan to cut greenhouse gases reminds me of the many different descriptions we can give feeling only a small part of an elephant (“Critics fault Maryland Gov. Hogan’s plan for cutting greenhouse gases as late, lax,” July 19). They are all valid to the parts they are describing, but we all need to step back to see the elephant for what it is — very large, long term and much more than the small parts we each see.

Two great points I read in this article were: the need for immediate changes in how we use energy and the need to have economically viable plans. We must stop thinking future technologies will solve our present problems. We must act now, and in a fiscally responsible manner.

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Government can help all of us transition to 21st century energy sources with a market signal to get off fossil fuels. Governor Hogan should be speaking up about that and leading the way in Maryland with both discussions and actions on what leading economists and scientists have all been pointing us toward — carbon fee and dividend. Take a look at studies from Columbia University, MIT and others about carbon fee and dividend as a great immediate step to meet the Paris target reduction goals, protect the poor and grow our economy. Better yet, check out the new upcoming En-ROADS simulation by Climate Interactive to see what all the various proposals alone and in combination will do for greenhouse gas reductions.

Managing this elephant called climate change is difficult for many reasons, including the fact that it is global. Governor Hogan, an immediate action you can take is to endorse a bipartisan national bill that places a fee at the point of fossil fuel extraction and returns all fees (minus administrative costs) to households equitably, and with a border correction to nudge the rest of the world toward a carbon fee. Take a look at the effective bipartisan revenue-neutral climate bill presently in the House: the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, H.R. 763, and lend your voice by endorsing it. Then have conversations with your bipartisan Marylanders on how we can work together to place a market signal to transition now to 21st century energy sources.

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Sabrina S. Fu, Ellicott City

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