Legislative Committee on C-30
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Director Sage Climate Project
Thank you Mr. Chair. I, along with my colleagues in the Climate Action Network,
welcome this opportunity to talk about the contribution emissions trading can make to the
cost effective reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
I will divide my comments between the need for the Clean Air Act to support the
potential for international and then domestic emissions trading.
Let me begin by restating what everyone here says they accept but which I sometimes
don’t think everyone truly appreciates. Before long – within the lifetime of our children
– the Earth will warm at least two degrees.
It doesn’t sound like much. But don’t be fooled. It is a calamity. An environmental
crisis. An economic disaster. A health care tsunami. At least, if met with continued to
half-measures and indifference, it will be.
In truth, I am among those whose appreciation of reality nevertheless still leaves me
optimistic. I believe we can make a huge difference and find great new opportunities – in
the long term AND in the short term.
Now, I know that everyone here understands the importance of global warming. And I
know that everyone here says that they now accept the virtue of that science.
But here is what I don’t understand – and with some reluctance, I must direct my
comments in this respect to the government members in particular. IF you accept the
science of climate change. IF you accept that as humans we are making the problem far
worse. IF you know that what costs one dollar to fix now will cost five dollars to fix in
the future. Then how can you possibly reject the idea of doing everything reasonably
possible to take action right now. How can you logically and intellectually rationalize
doing less than what you know to be necessary and you realize is possible? There is a
massive gap in logic taking place.
And for me, the inexplicable resistance