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Letter - Time is running out for us

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To the editor:

It's common knowledge that many conservative economists who've served Republican presidents have endorsed a tax on oil, coal and natural gas as the surest, quickest, most economical method to address the growing problem of climate change. On Friday, August 2, the New York Times carried an op-ed by four recent heads of the Environmental Protection Agency under Republican administrations. William Ruckleshaus and his colleagues argue that if we want to avoid irreversible climate change, time is running out for America to adopt a carbon tax.

Courageous Republicans are not afraid to argue fiercely for the environment because they know that sound conservative principles require them to protect the well-being of the American people "working with the best technology available and trusting in the innovation of American business and in the market to find the best solutions for the least cost." (Ruckleshaus et al NYT.com, 8-2-13) They go on to say that's how we fixed our polluted rivers, the hole in the ozone layer and the problem of acid rain and the economy did not suffer.

I have lived through the past 40 years and seen how we lost our manufacturing base and haven't rebuilt it. In these times of high unemployment and competition from foreign countries, notably China, we are failing our true potential to create millions of new jobs by investing in alternative energies like wind and solar. A carbon tax would speed that investment. Why did we lose our faith in the promise of America to provide jobs for all?

Jeanne Johnson

Alexandria, MN

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