Letters to the Editor

The budget reconciliation bill currently being drafted in the Senate must include effective measures to address climate change, and the most effective policy would be a carbon fee and dividend, which puts a steadily rising price on all carbon-based fuels and returns the net revenue to U.S. citizens.

The fee on carbon-based fuels would drive a transition to clean, renewable energy and put the U.S. on track to meet President Biden’s goal of slashing carbon emissions in half by 2030. The dividend would provide enough money that two-thirds of households would break even or come out ahead of the increased energy prices. The dividend would bring new money into the economy, stimulating job growth in most sectors.

The ravages of climate change have been all over the news this summer: deaths from extreme heat, record-setting wildfires all over the West, major hurricanes that spawned destructive floods, and water shortages in other areas. So much greenhouse gases have been added to our atmosphere that these destructive trends will continue for years. But to prevent extreme weather events from reaching truly catastrophic levels we must take immediate, strong steps to reduce carbon emissions.

Economists of all stripes, advisers to both Republican and Democratic presidents, agree that the fastest way to reduce carbon emissions is through a steadily rising price on carbon-based fuels. Urge your senators and representative to vote for a price on carbon, with a rebate to households, in the budget reconciliation bill.

Steve Schlather, Springfield

America has created ingenious ways of using electricity that touch nearly every facet of our everyday lives. From the revolutionary light bulb to the evolutionary all-electric vehicle and everything in between, electricity has become a vital commodity. And yet, it’s something that we think very little about until it’s not on.

While we have seen numerous, innovative ways to use electricity, the way our power is generated, transmitted and billed has changed little in the last century. Other industries over the decades have experienced growth, innovation and lower prices all thanks to free-market competition and the policies that support it.

Unfortunately, energy policy has become a partisan issue over the last decade. Conservatives are associated with promoting traditional energy sources such as coal, gas and oil, while liberals tend to stand for renewable energy sources such as wind and solar. This partisan divide is largely driven by the debate over climate change and has ignored the economic, national security, and cost stability issues that are tied directly to our energy policy.

Now, more than ever, we need a diversified energy portfolio. National Clean Energy Week (NCEW) is a reminder to celebrate the broad and diverse energy sources and technologies - solar, wind, hydropower, geothermal, nuclear, natural gas, biomass, carbon capture, waste to energy, energy storage and energy waste reduction - that power our grid. America needs an ‘every option’ solution. NCEW is a bipartisan effort to bring together business leaders, advocates, policymakers, and trade associations from all perspectives who are dedicated to advancing clean energy. By harnessing the power of the free market and government collaboration we can advance energy policies that create jobs, expand our economy, strengthen America’s national security, and preserve our environment.

I am on the Ohio Conservative Energy Forum Leadership Council because energy is an important issue for everyone. Energy policy can no longer be a partisan discussion. It needs to be an American priority.

Zach Upton, Beavercreek