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Ms Smith Goes To Washington To Lobby For A Price On Carbon Pollution

2013/06/19

Life feels incredibly busy these days; not only is it gardening season, there’s so much happening on the climate front as well as personally that it’s hard to keep up. I’m preparing to travel to Washington DC this weekend, along with my husband and 19 other Canadian climate activists. We’re going to be joining over 330 people from across the United States who are also concerned about the impacts of climate change for future generations, to lobby for a price on carbon pollution. We Canadians are joining our American CCL colleagues in Washington because the issue of climate change has no borders, and because this is an issue that will impact both of our nation’s economies.  Our grassroots organization, Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL) has over 100 chapters across North America. CCL was formed in 2007 by Grameen Foundation Humanitarian award winner Marshall Saunders, in order to organize and empower citizens to lobby for the political will for a liveable world. CCL volunteers are focusing our lobbying efforts on putting a price on carbon pollution through a carbon fee and dividend.

Cathy Orlando, Canada’s National Manager for CCL feels that it is important for Canadians to lobby in Washington DC because, “the Harper Government has shown us through their actions and in writing that they are intent on aligning Canada’s climate and energy policies with the USA’s policies.”

A recent article over at SkepticalScience.com highlighted Citizens Climate Lobby, and the importance of putting a price on carbon:

Putting a price on carbon emissions is a key climate solution.  Failing to price carbon emissions is effectively a massive subsidy, estimated at about $800 billion per year globally by the International Monetary Fund.  However, that estimate was based on a carbon damages cost that was recently revised upwards by about 50% by the US government, based on up-to-date economic modeling.  Using conservative assumptions, global subsidies for the climate costs of carbon emissions now exceed $1.1 trillion per year, and may be much higher.

The absence of a carbon price to account for those costs is a failure of the free market.  It prevents citizens from making informed purchasing decisions, because the actual costs of the products they buy are not accurately reflected in their market prices.  When it comes to climate costs, American and Canadian consumers are flying blind.  Unfortunately we can’t avoid paying the costs of climate damage forever, and they are reflected in effects like rising food prices when crops are decimated by extreme weather like heat waves and droughts, with contributions from human-caused climate change.  (Click here to read the full article on SkepticalScience.com)

The article included videos featuring two different climate scientists discussing CCL’s effectiveness, which I’m reposting here. Dr James Hansen, recently retired from NASA, is in the first video, and Dr Katherine Hayhoe from Texas Tech University is in the second one:

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In the midst of all of this week’s busyness came some sad news. A younger cousin of mine who had been struggling with ALS-like symptoms since 2009, passed on earlier this week. Today’s post is dedicated to Rhonda, who will always be an example of courage, grace, and faith in the face of extraordinary challenges. I am humbled by how Rhonda lived her life.

R.I.P Rhonda

R.I.P Rhonda

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