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Concentration of CO2 in the Atmosphere

Toward a Price on Carbon Pollution

12-01 boxes_presser_600_thinVPIRG joined with other members of the Energy Independent Vermont coalition to deliver 25,241 postcards and petition signatures to Vermont lawmakers – all supporting a price on carbon pollution.

At the delivery on the State House steps, we heard from:

  • Fran Putnam, chair of the Weybridge Energy Committee, who said she was inspired to act on climate because she’s concerned about the world she’s leaving for her grandchildren. 
  • Ricky Klein, owner of the Groenfell Meadery in Colchester, who explained that this policy makes sense not just for individual Vermonters but Vermont businesses as well. 
  • Paul Zabriskie, the Weatherization Director for Capstone Community Action in Barre, who told us why low-income advocacy organizations are behind this effort. 
  • Reverend Dick Hibbert of Interfaith Power and Light, who called addressing global warming a “moral imperative.” 
  • Nick Wahlers, a grassroots organizer who spoke face-to-face with many of the Vermonters who signed these petitions and learned that thousands of Vermonters want bold climate action.

This diverse group supports a carbon pollution tax because they understand what a unique opportunity we have.

We have a chance to reduce our carbon emissions, hold the fossil fuel companies accountable for their pollution, cut taxes and help Vermonters save money through efficiency and clean energy upgrades.

When people hear these details, they want to get behind this plan. That’s why 25,000+ Vermonters — from every corner of the state — have already backed it. And that’s why I’m eager to continue the public conversation about this proposal.

And we’ll be doing just that – this Thursday, December 3 at 7pm in the Capitol Plaza in Montpelier.

I’ll be joining my colleague Jon Erickson of the Gund Institute at UVM to debate Rob Roper and John McClaughry of the climate-denying Ethan Allen Institute on:

  • Whether Vermont has a role to play in addressing global warming and
  • Whether a tax on carbon pollution, when paired with other tax cuts and investments in alternatives to fossil fuels, is a reasonable solution

This debate is open to the public – so visit the Energy Independent Vermont website to let us know if you’d like to attend.

You can also submit a question for the moderator to ask and let us know if you’d like to find out when a video of the debate is online!

I hope you can make it, and even if you can’t, please spread the word to friends and family.

We know that in addition to those 25,000+ Vermonters who made their voices heard today, there are thousands and thousands more who want bold climate action.And as soon as they hear that we can take that action while growing our economy andsaving Vermonters money — they’ll be joining this already-massive grassroots movement.

Thank you so much for helping us get this far. I hope to see you Thursday.

All the best,


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