Dear fellow citizens,

Good news: On May 24, the Clean Energy Job Act became law in the state of Maryland, mandating that by the year 2030 Maryland will achieve the goal of using 50% renewable energy. Much work remains to develop the “nuts and bolts” of policy that will ensure the effective deployment of this goal. Though not perfect, this bill puts Maryland on track for shouldering our local responsibility to protect our natural environment from further degradation.

In the wake of the devastation brought by record-setting Hurricane Dorian, and on the heels of the hottest month in recorded history (July 2019), we would do well to heed the warnings that are abundantly evident. We live in an unfortunate and perilous era where factual data are discredited as “fake news/hoax ” — including decades of respected scientific research. We cannot afford to continue wearing blinders in the face of the evidence before us. The current administration has withdrawn the U.S. from the hard-won Paris Climate Agreement (a divorce process of 4 years). We are fortunate that to date 24 states, including Maryland, have responded by making commitments to the United States Climate Alliance, whose member States pledge to follow the environmental standards of the Paris Agreement within their own borders.

Our earth is in grave danger. The United States comprises about 5% of the world population, yet our energy consumption is calculated at 17-24% of the world’s energy use, depending upon the source consulted. The only country that exceeds our energy consumption is China, and their population is far larger at 18.5% of world population. Some say that the US needed to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement because other countries are taking advantage of us. Perhaps in some ways they may be, but when it comes to our contribution to the degradation of our natural environment, I think we need to recalculate this assessment.

There are so many mind-boggling problems in the world today, where does one start? 16-year-old Greta Thunberg says we must start with action. Won’t you join me in finding and engaging in an organization that is taking action on climate issues? Will you write/call/email your legislators and let them know of your concerns? Let’s make America great again: let’s speak up and take on our God-given responsibility to care for our planet and every creature who lives here.

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