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Congressman Gary Ackerman Responds on Climate Change

Posted in Editorials on February 8th, 2011

Congressman Ackerman sent a response to this letter via email on February 7, 2011.

Thank you for contacting me to express your concern about global warming. I am happy to share my views with you on this very important issue.

I believe global warming is one of the most serious threats facing our nation and our planet. The evidence supporting anthropogenic global warming is overwhelming and, despite the claims of some politically motivated commentators and pundits, climatologists nearly unanimously agree that the earth is warming, that man is having a significant impact on this trend, and that there will be major consequences if it continues.

The implications of these findings are dire. Over half of the United States’ population lives in costal regions; an ocean rise precipitated by increasing global temperatures could have catastrophic effects in these communities. Moreover, numerous sectors of our economy depend on a stable climate. Our agriculture, fishing, and tourism industries—along with many others—rely heavily on consistent seasons and temperatures. Climate change could cause major financial losses in these areas and do serious damage to our economy.

The only response to this looming crisis is to proactively reduce carbon emissions and invest in alternative energy technologies. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, H.R. 1, signed into law by President Obama two years ago, took important and unprecedented steps towards investing in alternative energies and the “green” economy. In addition, on June 26th, 2009, the House of Representatives passed the American Clean Energy and Security Act, which, for the first time in our nation’s history, would limit America’s carbon emissions and put our nation on the path to a sustainable future.

Unfortunately, this important legislation died when Republicans blocked its consideration in the Senate. Now, they threaten to roll back the crucial—if limited—progress that the Environmental Protection Agency has made toward curbing emissions through the authority granted in the Clean Air Act. Rest assured that I will continue to oppose these efforts, and work for strong environmental protections and stringent clean air standards

I thank you again for contacting me about this important issue. I hope you will continue to share your concerns and suggestions with me.

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