Letters to the Editor

Carbon tax needed

Thank you to John Lindsey for mentioning climate change in his recent article (“Still a chance of rain in winter,” Aug. 10). While true that global warming is producing “more persistent and stronger ridges of high pressure and deeper, longer-lasting low-pressure troughs,” the three-year-long drought on the Central Coast is anything but part of a normal weather cycle.

The first six months of 2014 were the hottest ever recorded in California, almost 5 degrees hotter, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. As the climate warms due to the extreme amount of CO2 that we put into the atmosphere each year from coal-burning power plants and fracking, the Central Coast is likely to experience more frequent and severe droughts, along with a continuing diminution of water resources due to decreased snowfall.

The only way to slow and eventually stop the destructive cycle of climate change is to tax carbon, returning proceeds to households. When polluters are made to pay for the harm they cause to the environment, nonpolluting energy will become cheaper than high-emissions energy.

Our legislators need to pass legislation to tax CO2 emitters. Let’s start bringing up the temperature on our congressmen and down on Central Coast temperatures.