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Move forward with carbon emission standards

To the Editor:

The National Climate Assessment recently released a new draft predicting Rhode Island and surrounding states will experience more severe heat waves, coastal and river flooding due to sea level rise and extreme precipitation events, as well as threats to the agricultural sector. This report, along with recent events like Hurricane Sandy, should provide a wake-up call for Congress and the Rhode Island General Assembly that immediate strong action on global warming is needed.

Nationally, President Obama and the Environmental Protection Agency are working to develop the first ever carbon pollution limits for new and existing power plants, which will help to clean up the largest source of carbon pollution. Regionally, Rhode Island is a part of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) along with eight other northeastern states. RGGI caps and auctions power plant emissions, and invests the revenues in clean energy initiatives.

Although these are good first steps, we must do more. Obama must move forward with these carbon pollution standards, Governor Chafee must work to strengthen the RGGI program – and we must speak out and urge our state and national legislators to prioritize climate change and reduce emissions wherever we can. Our health and the environment depend on it.

Eunice Lee

Environment Rhode Island


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