Bipartisan Bill in Congress Would Help Address Climate Change

By RICK DANIELS

Climate change has been progressing at a greater rate as evidenced by extreme weather patterns, droughts, rising sea levels, wildfires, and the intensity of storms, flooding, and insect-borne and respiratory diseases right here in Rhode Island.

The recently released Fourth National Climate Assessment written by 300 experts said we need to aggressively address carbon emissions in less than 20 years to avert catastrophic consequences to our environment.

During the lame-duck session of Congress, a groundbreaking bill was introduced by two Republicans and three Democrats addressing the need to reduce emissions by imposing a steadily rising fee on fossil fuels at the point of extraction. As a revenue-neutral bill, money will be put back into the pockets of consumers to cover the increased costs that could be passed on to them.

The bill would also level the playing field in the energy sector by incentivizing renewable-energy jobs and would improve overall environmental quality and health.

I look forward to this bill being reintroduced with greater support next year.

Rick Daniels is South Kingstown, R.I., resident.