Letter writer: Support carbon fee and dividend to address climate change

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Graphic by Lori Deaton

Like thousands of others, we in Western North Carolina have been terrified and heartbroken by the wildfires in our region caused by drought; we know this is a result of runaway climate change.

I have just watched the first two episodes of “Years of Living Dangerously,” and I am wondering whether the solution might not be a carbon fee and dividend. It makes no sense for all of us to pay with our health, and our futures, so that polluters have the right to pollute for free.

Please support a carbon fee and dividend, which is proven to create millions of jobs and grow the economy as well. Thank you.

— Cathy Holt
Asheville

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25 thoughts on “Letter writer: Support carbon fee and dividend to address climate change

  1. Lulz

    LOL, taxes create jobs? For whom? The bloated and corrupt government? LOL, get lost.

  2. The Real World

    Cathy – If you would please inform us about what percentage of a carbon fee goes directly into Al Gore’s pocket, I’d be happy to give that concept some more thought.

    I’d also be interested to know whether you are comfortable with the overall amount of money Al (and his buddies – Tom Steyer, for example) have made off the concepts and products they loudly tout and want taxpayer dollars invested in?

    • Jan Freed

      All fees are divided equally. You and Al Gore would get the same share.

      • The Real World

        Jan – you didn’t comprehend my question accurately.

        • Jan Freed

          Well, please restate it. You asked what share Gore got, did you not?

      • Lulz

        LOL, but who gets a pass at actually having to pay up loon? Let me toss out a few who will of course get an exemption. Blacks, illegals, single mothers will of course be subsidized and will not be punished. They can turn up the A/C and heat. Blue collar mainly whites of course who can’t afford the higher cost that will be passed down to them will freeze during the winter and be labeled racist when they speak up.

        Again loony Jan, you just got shown how angry people are getting this past November. Double standards by you loons can no longer be hidden by the media. You want to add more fuel to it then that’s your business. But when others start to realize that they’re being tasked with paying for it while you loons live the elitist life as well as the welfare and spechul classes, don’t come crying how unfair it is. It’s why the push back has started. And if I were you, I’d first look at my own denial before accusing others of being out of touch.

  3. david gelber

    (I THINK I MISTAKENLY SENT A RESPONSE BEFORE IT WAS FINISHED. USE THIS INSTEAD, PLEASE.)

    Cathy,

    I hope you get a chance to tell Lulz and The Real World that putting a price on carbon, first proposed by Republicans, is an excellent idea which raises the cost of filthy energy so it accurately reflects the damage it does — from droughts to category 4 hurricanes to rising sea levels that will destroy coastal communities. The revenue raised by a carbon tax can be returned to taxpayers and/or invested in new and better clean energy technology. It’s the single best way to accelerate the transition to a clean energy economy and the millions of new jobs it will bring. Does any out there seriously think we’ll be better off sticking with fossil fuels that heat the planet?

    • boatrocker

      Interesting- Gelber’s claim that is.

      Sure enough, Milton Friedman (free market economist extraordinaire, economic advisor to Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher) was
      interviewed on the Phil Donahue show in 1979 where he espoused support for carbon taxes as a pollution solution.

      Apparently the entire interview can be found (Forbes, Oct 12, 2014, Jeff McMahon ).

      Huh, and all these years we’ve been shrieky toddler screamed at that this idea is some sort of Al Gore driven commie plot and the death of civilization as we know it.

      I suppose it’s ok though if a Reagan advisor and notoriously conservative type of guy like Friedman suggested it, right? St. Reagan and his staff were sacrosanct and never wrong.

    • The Real World

      David – I am interested in your responses to the questions I posed above.

      Less pollution, less waste, clean energy, air and water……..an absolute YES to all. There is much room for improvement on the first two by pretty much everyone I know (incl the environmentally-concerned). Moving toward cleaner energy sources is a valuable endeavor but must be handled with great care and efficiency. It hasn’t been managed that way in many places. Posting two quotes from an online article I read in Oct about blackouts. They are from readers (I haven’t independently confirmed them):

      “Green energy destabilised the German power grid. So after the massive winter storm in 2012/2013 the German government started to build 7 new coal plants.”

      “The scale of the blackout makes a huge difference in how quickly it can be restored. If the blackout is regional you’re looking at a day or so. If it’s national it could take weeks.

      ISTR is an exercise performed in Germany on how long a national blackout would take to fix and it was, I think, about a week. The level of social co-operation falls significantly after 3 days and God only knows what a 7 day blackout would do.

      The German exercise was done purely because they consider such an event to actually be feasible given their reliance on ‘green energy’ sources and the unpredictablity of such supplies on grid balancing. Generally, the more reliant your system is on green energy the worse the situation becomes.”

      So, it seems Germany got ahead of itself and could not cope well when the chips were down. What do you say about the USA approaching these issues methodically? And that we do not bow to the ever urgent sales pitches from a guy who stands to profit hugely from what he’s selling? Four questions I’ve posed and am happy to learn of your answers.

      • Snowflake (Social Justice Worrier)

        Even though a large percentage of Germany’s electricity comes from renewables, their carbon emissions have increased because solar and wind are too variable; they need coal plants to produce when these others do not. Solar/wind produce like fiends when the sun/wind cooperate, but produce like paupers when they don’t.

      • David Gelber

        TRW, Thanks for your response. I think you’re right to question whether renewable sources of energy are currently able to satisfy the world’s energy needs. They’re not yet, as any clean energy advocate ought to acknowledge. But in China, Europe (including Germany) and the US, they’re coming on line much faster than anyone had a right to expect. A price on carbon would level the playing field by taking away the subsidy that enables dirty fuel producers to dump toxic pollution in our air for free. It would encourage private and public investment in clean energy. The central issue is this: 97% of peer reviewed studies by climate scientists conclude that we’re headed for catastrophic climate change if we don’t accelerate the transition from dirty energy to clean energy. That’s a fact. It’s not a partisan argument. You can dispute it if you like, but if you get seriously ill, I advise you to accept the diagnosis and treatment plan of 97% of the doctors you consult. Are Al Gore and Tom Steyer mainly motivated by greed? I doubt it, but even if they are, they’re no match for the fossil fuel companies that supported groups and individuals that pumped out fake science for decades in an attempt to derail clean energy — or the fossil fuel based utility companies that are currently doing their best to keep solar out of Florida, Nevada and elsewhere. It’s just awful that this issue is stuck in a whirlpool of partisan enmity. It shouldn’t have happened — and wouldn’t have if the Koch brothers and others hadn’t dumped buckets of money into a pro-dirty energy campaign in 2009-10. Something to remember: the candidate who was best on clean energy in 2008 was McCain, not Obama.

        • Snowflake (Social Justice Worrier)

          “The central issue is this: 97% of peer reviewed studies by climate scientists conclude that we’re headed for catastrophic climate change if we don’t accelerate the transition from dirty energy to clean energy. ”

          You lost all credibility when you tried to leverage the 97% number. A totally bogus, dis-proven fraud.

          • The Real World

            David – I agree with several of your points but here’s where my problems are.
            — Your quote that Snowflake copied above is, indeed, not accurate. It’s fraudulent, in fact. That 97% number is derived from the answers to a questionnaire given to IPCC scientists (less than 200 of them, I believe. Which is a fraction of the number worldwide). Several have publicly stated that many of the questions did not make sense or were quite obviously structured to elicit particular “answers”. Surprise……the IPCC gets the results they intended — 97% of THOSE scientists sort-of agree but, didn’t really like the questionnaire. And some well-regarded scientists have dropped off the roster of that organization because the more they learned, they realized they couldn’t support it and have spoken out about it. Hey, don’t shoot me, I didn’t make that reality but I sure as heck am going to listen to dissenting viewpoints of learned people who were there.

            You are doing yourself a disservice not to entertain opposing opinions from people in that field. Youtube has plenty of video’s of skeptical climate scientists giving testimony before Congress, speeches and interviews where they dispute plenty of what the IPCC claims. You would be remiss and lop-sided to exclude what they have to say from consideration.

            So, yeah, let’s go for cleaner everything but let’s do it with great consideration, plenty of debate, extreme vetting of proposed solutions and reduce as close to zero as possible the skim that rich fat cats like Gore, Steyer and others are lifting from American citizens wallets. I would happily make a fat wager that if their ‘take’ was eliminated, they would pretty quickly turn their attention elsewhere (and claim that”new research and advanced modeling, etc.” has indicated the climate is moderating. It’s not as dire as we first believed, they’d say. Right.) How about it? Let’s get their sticky fingers out of the honeypot and see what happens.

            Meanwhile you didn’t actually answer my questions. But then, I figured that would be the case. Par for the course.

    • Snowflake (Social Justice Worrier)

      “Does any out there seriously think we’ll be better off sticking with fossil fuels that heat the planet?”

      Does anyone seriously think that civilization as we know it will continue to exist without hydrocarbons?

      • boatrocker

        As human civilization has existed for far longer without hydrocarbons than with them, sure, why not?

        • Snowflake (Social Justice Worrier)

          Shirley, you must have the capacity to distinguish between civilization and out level of civilization?

          • boatrocker

            Was this a lead in question?
            Yes, and don’t call me Shirley.

  4. Jan Freed

    Why even bother with the paid deniers and front groups who thrive creating the delay of a false debate?

    A revenue neutral carbon fee with a dividend, makes enormous sense! !
    Economists and scientists say it is the best solution to the threat of our carbon emissions.
    It is not a tax. This way citizens would RECEIVE the carbon fees as a monthly check, for example. That would protect us from price spikes in dirty energy.

Polluters PAY the fees, so it holds fossil fuel corporations responsible for the damages. or externalitites, they cause, hundreds of billions of dollars per year (Harvard School of Medicine).

    It would more rapidly lower emissions than regulations alone, as happened in BC Canada with a similar, popular policy. BC lowered both emissions and taxes with their fees.

    A study by respected non-partisan Regional Economic Modeling, Inc. found the dividends would help to create 2.9 million additional jobs in 20 years, while reducing emissions 50% in that time. http://citizensclimatelobby.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/REMI-National-SUMMARY.pdf
    To those who reject the science: perhaps nothing will change your mind. But what have you got against cleaner air, less asthma in our kids, fewer heart attacks, and more money (the dividend) in your pockets?

    To those accepting the science: Any effort to
 limit the problem of climate change is worth it. For example: the cost of sea level rise ALONE is so great that no effort to prevent it is unwarranted.

    Elon Musk was asked “what can we do? ” Musk: “I would say whenever you have the opportunity, talk to the politicians.,,,,. We have to fix the unpriced externality [social cost]. I would talk to your friends about it and fight the propaganda from the carbon industry.”

    • Snowflake (Social Justice Worrier)

      Why collect a tax if you’re going to give it back? The fact is this is just another form of income redistribution. Lower income people will receive something back, while those with more means will not. And in the meantime a huge amount will be skimmed off by bureaucrats. It’s just another way for the progressives to create another layer of artificial economy by picking the public’s pocket.

    • The Real World

      “Why even bother with the paid deniers and front groups who thrive creating the delay of a false debate?” — that sentence alone indicated that I may as well read no further. That is some strong Kool-aid.

      Sure , let’s not debate anything. Let’s do what Germany did (see above) and let’s blindly follow and fund whatever the investors propose. What could possibly go wrong?

    • Snowflake (Social Justice Worrier)

      And btw, it would not be a dividend; it would be a rebate. Dividends are returns that increase with time based on a fixed investment. Rebates are returns based on continued spending.

  5. Lulz

    LOL, the loon hasn’t realized that unless they take themselves over to China and India and few South American nations that have scorched their rain forest to raise issues, that they are a joke. They are free to do it here because they FEEL relatively safe due to CIVILITY. For now. But since the commies have succeeded in literally starving blue collar workers out of their party, that they wish to continue it is insane. That they do not realize it and want to take even more money away from people barely making it is like pouring gas on a fire. I say keep doing it loons. But the day will come when it’s put to an end once and for all. And you will lose.

  6. David Gelber

    Dear The Real World,

    So the claim that 97% of climate scientists believe that humans are responsible for global warming is fraudulent, huh? Interesting. Here’s what NASA has to say about that:

    “Multiple studies published in peer-reviewed scientific journals1 show that 97 percent or more of actively publishing climate scientists agree: Climate-warming trends over the past century are extremely likely due to human activities. In addition, most of the leading scientific organizations worldwide have issued public statements endorsing this position.”

    Not enough for you, TRW? Here’s what 18 US scientific societies have said:

    “Observations throughout the world make it clear that climate change is occurring, and rigorous scientific research demonstrates that the greenhouse gases emitted by human activities are the primary driver.” (2009)

    A partial list of signatories include:

    American Academy for the Advancement of Science
    American Chemical Society
    American Geophysical Union
    American Medical Association
    American Meteorological Society
    American Physical Society
    United States National Academy of Sciences

    A final point: study after study (happy to supply) confirm that the more expertise scientists have on climate, the stronger the consensus. We can have lots of debates about what to do about climate change, about dirty energy vs. clean energy. But let’s not pretend the fact of human-caused global warming is in doubt among the scientists who know the most about it. You embarrass yourself when you do that.

    • Lulz

      The only hot air around here is you. I heard the same thing about smoking bans yet when I look at all those smokers standing in front of the open windowed Yacht Club and the smoke going inside, it’s a perfect example of you loons and how hollow and stupid you really are. And just like this phony garbage you keep tossing around, it’s all about perception, feelz, and control. The only thing you want is to change the identity of nation by punishing whites. After all, it’ll be blue collar whites paying for this crap. Everyone else can either afford it or use their lefty loony spechul identity status as a way to get subsidized.

    • boatrocker

      Coincidence or no? In reading through these I notice one side of this issue cites their opinions with facts, studies from scientifically valid organizations, prize winning economists via interviews.

      The dissenting side posts comments they ‘read in an interview’ (did this interview happen to have a name, author, or uh, way to find) and readily admits that
      said comments had not been ‘independently verified’ (aka the poster didn’t bother to fact check them.
      Yea, we had a little problem recently with loudmouth blowhards spewing wordarreha without bothering to fact check, if anyone can remember alllll the way back to a month ago.

      Tell me again, is this a thread dealing with verifiable climate,economic and scientific facts or did some of the new age woo woos who don’t use science accidentally get lost and post here?

      Wordarreha ™- it’s like never having to deal in facts if you don’t agree with them. Ask our doctor to be tested for Wordarreha.

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