Joining RGGI is a vital step in addressing Pa.’s carbon pollution problem | Opinion

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By Andrew Wilps

As the inveterate threat of climate change maintains its hold over us and dominates our political lexicon, Pennsylvania has not yet been heeding the numerous calls for action. We must start making our state an environmentally safe place and cut our carbon emissions, however in recent years the state government has made clear its support for natural gas and other outdated fossil fuels. As a resident of Middletown Township in Media, my own backyard has been ravaged by the newly constructed Mariner East Pipeline which saw vast sections of woodland and natural habitats torn down during its development and now threatens our safety due to numerous gas leaks, which amount to a serious public safety concern.  

While we cannot repair this damage, we can take steps in addressing the serious underlying problem of carbon pollution. Fortunately, Pennsylvania is considering joining the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. This is a vital step to take, as many other states have already joined  RGGI and within 10 years were able to decrease carbon pollution by 47 percent, outpacing the rest of  the country by 90 percent. When Pennsylvania joins RGGI, it is projected to further reduce carbon  emissions statewide by a massive 188 million tons by 2030. This is exactly the type of policy initiative we should be prioritizing in our state. 

Do not let our state make the same mistakes it did in allowing this horrid pipeline. We need to be  a part of positive change and that is why it is crucial we join this initiative.