Forum: Climate response in the nick of time

Marshall

We rarely believe those who detect dangers from warning signs before others see it. Examples of ignoring such warnings include the invasion of Kuwait, the 2008 recession, the Fukushima nuclear disaster and even the rise of ISIS and 9/11 — which have been disastrous in terms of lost lives and capital.

Despite warnings being based on solid evidence, they still may be ignored.

Often the decision maker has his or her own agenda and don’t want to be diverted from their projects. Sometimes individuals don’t want the responsibility of telling the decision maker the bad news.

Other times the regulators of an industry are so vested in the industry’s success that they fail to criticize the organization’s actions.

To avoid or mitigate a disaster a response may require violating ideological position — such as an increase in government spending — or larger government will reject the warning altogether.

To overcome these obstacles, a warning needs to include a solution that coincides with the agenda of the decision maker. In addition, the solution needs to respect the ideological constraints of the administration that is able to enact the solution.

Thankfully, we do have the solution to our warming planet that creates jobs, promotes clean and efficient energy and lowers premature deaths.

It is a market approach that uses price to influence industries to self-regulate, encourages households to reduce their carbon foot print and increases investment in green energy.

Since fees collected are returned to households by an existing government agency, there is no expansion of government. Since the fees are distributed equally regardless of income, the most vulnerable are protected.

Ask your representative Jack Bergman to co-sponsor the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act HR 7173, the bipartisan carbon price bill that has been introduced in Congress.

About the author: Ronald Marshall has a doctorate in clinical psychology. He worked in a group practice for more than 10 years, primarily with alcohol and drug addictions. He then moved up north to open a private practice, which he operated for more than 20 years. He is now retired and lives in Petoskey.

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