The Oberlin Review

Students Should Research Carbon Bill

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I read with appreciation Yan Jin’s fine article in last week’s Review about the Citizens’ Climate Lobby’s efforts to address the risks posed by climate change (“CCL Fights For Climate Change Policies” Nov. 30, 2018). The recent U.S. National Climate Assessment and the October report of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change underscore the urgent need for government action that deals effectively with this major challenge facing humanity.

As noted in the article, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividends Act of 2018 — the bipartisan legislation that CCL has lobbied for — was recently introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. I hope all members of the Oberlin College community will take time to learn about this legislation. A website that provides full information about the bill, including a detailed FAQ, is available at energyinnovationact.org.

If passed into law, this legislation would put a steadily rising fee on fossil fuels while returning all revenues to American households on an equal basis. It’s a revenue-neutral, market-based approach that does not rely on top-down regulation, which makes it attractive to conservatives. It’s attractive to liberals and progressives as well because it would be effective (allowing the U.S. to do its part in keeping global warming to below 1.5 degrees Celsius) and it would not be harmful to lower-income people. People of all political persuasions can support it because it would have positive effects on the American economy and the health of residents.
It will take time to build the political support that’s needed for the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividends Act to be passed into law. I urge readers to ask their members of Congress to support this bill and also to join CCL’s nationwide effort to work for its passage.

Ray English
Director of Libraries Emeritus

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