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Letter: Changes in the energy sector show increasing climate urgency

SHARE Letter: Changes in the energy sector show increasing climate urgency
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Low water levels by Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake are pictured on Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021.

Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

Only one year into the 2020s, we are amid unprecedented challenges that will define the upcoming decade: a devastating pandemic, political polarization, and the acute effects of climate change. Rather than despairing, we might benefit from a more hopeful perspective: historically, moments of tension have often had the greatest potential for societal shifts.

Indeed, recent news regarding the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge suggests a shift toward recognition of the reality of climate change. An Arctic refuge drilling auction attracted just three small-scale bidders and generated a fraction of predicted revenue. This unimpressive turnout indicates that, even in the energy sector, the economics of climate change is an important factor.

In this moment of potential, we must work to pass federal legislation that addresses climate change. One such initiative is the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act. This market-based initiative would introduce a fee on carbon resulting in a reduction of U.S. emissions by 50% in 20 years. And the act’s carbon dividend puts money into American pockets monthly.

The 2020s will be remembered for how we responded to our significant challenges. Please contact your members of Congress to support Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act — one of our best shots at mitigating climate change destruction.

Josh Epperly

Salt Lake City