The weekend is blowing its way through the eastern seaboard and with it, an energized coalition of new EcoRight leaders who have us jazzed to do the work with do. Read more about who they are and what they stand for below.
This week’s must read: A gun-owning Trump fan’s new crusade: clean energy (New York Times) “We should be focusing on the technologies of the future, not the dinosaur technology of the past,” says Green Tea Coalition founder Debbie Dooley. “Our energy grid is vulnerable to attack. Rooftop solar keeps us safe. People like solar.”
Wonder kids, activate: Scores of college Republicans nationwide are organizing under the coalition Students for Carbon Dividends, a new student-led coalition that aims to promote free market climate solutions and bipartisan climate policy action is supporting a cap and dividend approach to addressing climate change. The coalition launched this week with the support of 23 college Republican clubs, six Democratic clubs and five environmental clubs. “S4CD makes clear to our fellow young Republicans that we no longer need to choose between party orthodoxy and the mounting risks facing our planet,” says Kiera O’Brien, vice president of S4CD and a sophomore at Harvard University. “Adult leaders have not acted efficiently or effectively on this issue, and we are stepping forward to fill the void,” says Alex Posner, a senior at Yale University and founding president of S4CD. “I think a lot of young conservatives are frustrated by the false choice between no climate action and a big government regulatory scheme. They feel pressured that those are the only two options, and they’re hungry for a conservative pathway forward on climate… The other thing that’s unique here is that the elder statesmen of the Republican Party are kind of uniting with the younger generation, to press the middle generation to act on climate.”
We will articulate to our nation’s decision makers that we, the generation most affected by the threat of climate instability, want this concrete, effective, and sensible climate solution.” #S4CD #CarbonDividends @Curbed @kiera_0brien https://t.co/EKPbwd5nwU
S4CarbonDividends (@SforCD) March 1, 2018
“You can still choose to consume or emit as much [carbon dioxide] as you wantit’s a free marketbut you’re just going to be taxed on that,” said Dylan Jones, President of the University of Kansas College Republicans, about the plan. Elder statesmen and former Secretaries of State George Shultz and James A. Baker founded the Climate Leadership Council, which also advocates for the approach supported by the youth group. The Baker-Shultz plan would create a $40 tax on every ton of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere, while also creating a border carbon tax, raising the prices of imported goods from countries that do not impose a carbon tax themselves. Those funds would be redistributed to Americans as a monthly dividend.
Bay State plans: In Massachusetts, GOP Gov. Charlie Baker has been taking steps to build resiliency in light of a changing climate. Most recently, three Western Massachusetts communitiesPittsfield, Palmer, and Montaguewere awarded state grants to study the feasibility of building microgrids. A microgrid is a small-scale power system that can operate independently of the region’s bulk power grid. During emergencies, they can keep hospitals, public safety complexes, gas stations and other core services running even during times when the rest of the system is down due to stormslikely to increase in intensity and frequency due to climate change. “Diversifying Massachusetts’ energy portfolio and increasing our resilience helps us continue leading the way on preparing for the impacts of climate change,” said Baker’s statement.
And no climate jester (again) this week. But we put our good money on Generation Z EcoRight members trumping the roster of climate jesters any day of the week.
Stay strong, stay energized, and don’t blow away.