Op-Ed: Young Pennsylvanians want to fight climate change. Our leaders want to pretend they are.
Originally published in Broad + Liberty.
Young Pennsylvanians like me are worried about the impact of climate change on our environment. We support clean air, clean water, and reducing our carbon footprint—but we also know when our leaders present environmental solutions that are merely political theatre.
This fall, Pennsylvania lawmakers will spar with Gov. Tom Wolf over his push to join a carbon cap-and-trade program, called the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). Scientists identify greenhouse gas as the number-one cause of manmade climate change, and Wolf wants to take action on the issue, with or without support from the state Legislature, via RGGI.
The problem is, RGGI will cost Pennsylvanians in jobs, local economic growth, and higher energy bills, while doing absolutely nothing to fix climate change. It has already been adopted by 11 other states across the northeast, and data from these states shows exactly how superfluous the program is in the effort to speed up the reduction of carbon emission.
Using data from Pennsylvania RGGI Modeling Report, Wolf boasts that RGGI will “further our commonwealth’s climate goals, mitigate ongoing damage from climate change and invest in our workforce.” I wish that were true.
The RGGI report is…