Where I Stand Is it fair to leave the CO2 mess to our children?

March 19, 2019 GMT

Recently we had a tornado in Alabama that left a trail of destruction 1-mile wide and 24-miles long, killing 24 people in its path. This winter we had the polar vortex with extreme cold weather in much of the US. Australia recorded 116 degree Fahrenheit heat and 4 feet of rain in one week! Are these events related or caused by climate change? You decide.

Since the mass production of the automobile in the 1950s, the CO2 levels have been on a continual rise. Mother Nature can not balance out the overproduction of human-produced CO2 gases into the atmosphere. The result is the earth is getting warmer, which leads to extreme weather we have experienced. Even if you don’t believe in what is happening with the weather, I think we should at least stop polluting the environment and start taking advantage of the programs that promote clean energy.

What can we do? We need to reduce the the CO2 output by quickly eliminating the fossil fuel consumption as reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report from last year. In other words, we need to change our habits and for many of us that can be hard.

Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL) has reintroduced The Energy Innovation and Carbon Fee Dividend Act Bill into Congress (H.R. 763). The purpose of the bill is to change our buying behavior from fossil fuels to renewable energy. A fee is placed on fossil fuels at the source (oil or natural gas well, coal or tar sands mine, port of entry for imported fossil fuels). This fee starts at $15 per ton CO2 equivalent emissions, and increases each year by $10; 100 percent of the net fees (after program costs) is returned to American households on an equal basis. Under this plan about two-thirds of all households would break even or receive more in their dividend checks than they would pay in higher prices due to the fee, thereby protecting the poor and middle classes.

Since the older generations got us into this mess, we need to take the responsibility to turn this around. I don’t think it is fair to leave this problem to the children. In Europe, 16-year-old Greta Thunberg started a climate justice movement in which more than 30,000 children in Europe have taken to the streets protesting the government to make changes.

In the U.S. we can write to your representatives asking them to vote for this bill. This can be accomplished two ways.

CCL WEBSITE: You can go to the CCL website and click the action button and then write to Congress. It takes no more than 5 minutes.


Change happens when representative hear our voices. Please be active and help our children.

The 5th District Connecticut Chapter of Citizens Climate Lobby of Southbury meets the third Saturday of every month. If you would like to get involved to save our planet, then join us. Email us at 5thdccl@gmail.com.

Ron Brandes is a resident of Southbury.