Clothesline in Winter

Clothesline in Winter

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Write to Congress? What Should I Say?

A dear friend read my last post, and followed my suggested link to write her congressman. When she got to the website, she paused:  WHAT SHOULD I SAY??

Good question. You’re concerned about abuse of the creation. You want to protect it for its Maker, for your children, and for all people. But what, specifically should you tell your Senators and Congressperson? As much as you’d like to write your original thoughts, let me suggest you start with something from my pen. Copy and paste it, shorten it, add to it, personalize it as you wish. But at least this will give you a start.

And when you're finished, here's a reminder of how to reach your Congressional representatives: Just click here.

Dear Senator/Representative ________________:

I am writing to urge you to respond to the growing weight of evidence that our present environmental policies are leading to disastrous and unjust results for us, for our children, and for those who are least able to adapt to the damage we are inflicting on the earth. Even though environmental policy has recently become politicized, there is no place for political posturing on issues like the unfolding mass extinction of threatened species, loss of vital habitats and ecosystems, acidification of the oceans, sea level rise, and rapid global climate change. 

Despite controversy that still simmers in Congress, the National Academy of Sciences and virtually all leading scientific associations have made clear the reality of the following dangerous developments:

  • The global climate is rapidly changing due to unparalleled concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, resulting in severe droughts, catastrophic flooding, intense tropical storms, and coastal damage;
  • Roughly one-third of all assessed species are threatened with extinction due to habitat destruction and over-exploitation, and climate change is now expected to threaten roughly half of all known species with extinction;
  • Oceans have absorbed much of the carbon we’ve poured into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels, and are now one-third more acidic than they were a generation ago, imperiling countless marine species and ecosystems on which mankind depends; and
  • Sea levels are rising as oceans warm and ice sheets melt, and are projected to wreak unfathomable damage on the world’s coastal communities, including Miami, New York and New Orleans.

Unless our country acts promptly to protect the earth, our children will inherit a largely unrecognizable planet, beset by famine, displaced populations, altered disease vectors, mass human migration and desperate resource conflicts. In light of these risks, I ask you to take the following steps:

  • Support incentives and research for clean energy and efficiency technologies, such as wind, geothermal, solar energy and efficiency standards. While natural gas is less polluting than coal and has a transitional role in our energy mix, we should not delude ourselves by calling it clean energy.
  • Support global agreements on climate change. The U.S. alone refused to ratify the Kyoto Protocol, and our opposition undermined global efforts to rein in a problem which has now become a global crisis. Global warming is global, and so are its solutions.
  • Eliminate subsidies for polluting fossil fuel industries. Oil, coal and gas are mature industries that do not need – or deserve – taxpayer subsidies. “Energy independence” may sound appealing as a slogan, but with free markets, we can be no more independent than the highest international bidder.
  • Establish a price on carbon emissions. No one has a right to profit from polluting activities, leaving the costs and consequences to our children and those on distant shores. We have successfully limited the emission of ozone-destroying CFCs through market mechanisms, and must do the same with earth-heating greenhouse gases.
  • Defend the EPA from attacks as it acts to protect us from polluters. In particular, support the EPA’s limitations on emissions of heavy metals, sulfur, CO2 and particulates from new and existing power plants.

People who labor to defend the earth lack the lobbying budgets available to polluting industries. But we have a just cause, the vote, and the willingness to take all measures to protect the earth and its most vulnerable children. We look to you as our representative to defend it for all people, both now and in our children's day.


You've got a voice. Let them hear it!
Don’t forget: It’s easy to reach your Congressional representatives. Just click here.

Thanks for writing, and may God bless you.

J. Elwood

No comments:

Post a Comment