Today, as world leaders gather in Paris to confront global warming, over 25,000 Vermonters called on their elected Representatives to take action by putting a price on carbon pollution.
Representatives of the Energy Independent Vermont coalition delivered 25,241 postcards and petitions to legislators at the Statehouse calling on them to “tackle global warming and save Vermonters money by reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.” The event coincided with the start of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris.
Vermonters in every House and Senate district in the state are calling on their elected representatives to take bold climate action “by putting a price on carbon pollution and creating an Energy Independence Fund.” The Fund will help Vermonters save money, reduce dependence on fossil fuels and create jobs.
At the Statehouse, Fran Putnam, chair of the Weybridge Energy Committee, said the Energy Independent Vermont campaign was founded on three principles: “1) Cutting carbon pollution, 2) Growing the Vermont economy and creating jobs, and 3) Supporting low-income Vermonters as they make the transition to a clean energy future.”
Ricky Klein of the Groenfell Meadery in Colchester said, “My business supports putting a price on carbon pollution because it’s smart business and will grow Vermont’s economy. ”
Paul Zabriskie, Weatherization Director for Capstone Community Action in Barre, said, “In just the first 10 years the Energy Independence Fund would weatherize the homes of 10,000 low-income Vermont families, and help tens of thousands of other Vermonters cut their energy use and bills as well. And those money-saving energy upgrades mean hundreds more construction and renovation jobs for hard-working Vermonters as we transition to a clean energy future.”
Reverend Dick Hibbert of Interfaith Power and Light, spoke of “mobilizing a religious response to global warming. We have a moral responsibility to be faithful stewards of Creation by responding to global warming through the promotion of energy conservation, energy efficiency, and renewable energy.”
Recent Champlain College graduate Nick Wahlers – who helped collect hundreds of the petition signatures across Vermont – said, “ if we don’t make any changes Vermont will continue to send hundreds of millions of dollars out of state each year to fossil fuel companies that are polluting our air … for free. All of us have a responsibility to take action and put a price on carbon pollution.”