When we bought the place almost 40 years ago I surmised that we’d be replacing the fence before long. But amazingly, with a new length of wire here and a replacement fencepost there, this well-worn fence has stood tall and is at least as good as…old. Too bad it’s not that simple with the climate. If only we could make some simple repairs now and fix the climate as good as…old, like it was some 40 years ago.
But a recent report out of UW Madison reminds us that the unprecedented (in historic terms) melting of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets is already causing oceans to rise. Unlike a fence that can be fixed, even if we ended fossil fuel use today those mountains of ice wouldn’t magically re-assemble. Indeed, because of accumulated greenhouse gasses, melting will continue raising the level of the oceans for decades.
As a result America now has its first climate-displaced community. The residents of Isle de Jean Charles in southern Louisiana are being forced to abandon their homes because of rising sea levels. These folks will be relocated to higher ground at the alarming cost of $800,000 per person* courtesy of your tax dollars.
With Americans already being indirectly taxed by global warming related events (been following the heat wave and fires in the Southwest?) why not have the industries that profit from the sale of greenhouse gas emitting products chip in? Carbon Fee & Dividend legislation would do just that. And contrary to common misconception instead of slowing down, the economy would actually grow making average citizens a bit wealthier. “Ha – must be some accounting double-talk,” you say. Not so. Read more next time right here or research “carbon fee & dividend” for yourself on-line.
Our climate is being altered with unforeseen circumstances. Unlike a fence it can’t be patched sometime in the future to make it just as good as it used to be. Our only home is depending on us to act NOW because we’re here forever…Earthbound. *July/Aug issue Smithsonian