Letter: Room for everyone in the climate movement
Thank you for your three-part report about climate change and the ski industry. Resorts differ in their responses to a rising snowline, just as industries and individuals engage in this enormous issue in a million ways, for a million reasons. Matt Hamilton of SkiCo wants “vibrant communities”. Rob Katz of Vail wants “to save the planet for our children and grandchildren”. Barb Coddington wants monarch butterflies and birds. Jet-setting skiers want pow. Regardless of what motivates us, there is room for everyone in the climate movement. When Naomi Oreskes, author of Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming, visited Aspen in 2011, she reminded a packed room that Big Tobacco’s reign ended not because of its health impacts, but from an anti-trust lawsuit. Just as in the Civil Rights Movement and countless campaigns before, victory is unpredictable and piecemeal. So we just keep going with simultaneous, full-force effort from every sector and every demographic: improving, changing the power supply, even localizing the food system. But one change would make all our actions easier — allow us to swim with the tide instead of against it. Regardless of who we are, what we are doing, and why, a price on carbon changes the game, so that environmentally-friendly decisions make good business sense. A carbon fee and dividend policy in Congress would help our ski areas (the staple in our mountain economies) keep their snow, while giving locals (and households around the country) extra cash for the things that matter. As citizens, we can and should be asking our senators and representatives for such a policy.
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