Op/Ed

Letter to the editor: Don’t pan the Affordable Heat Act, improve it

At the Legislative Breakfast on March 27, Representative Joe Andriano made a strong statement in opposition to S. 5, the Affordable Heat Act. I hope he can be persuaded to change his position.

The most troubling assertion by Rep. Andriano was that what we do in Vermont makes no difference in countering climate change, which he agrees is human caused and needs addressing. Vermont punches above its weight in many areas, and combating climate change is one of them. What we do in Vermont gets noticed. Furthermore, if people everywhere took this attitude there would be no progress on reducing harmful emissions. The fact is, Vermont lags behind many states in reducing its CO2 emissions, particularly in transportation. We have a responsibility to do everything we can to address climate change.

Rep. Andriano has valid questions about how the recommendations of S. 5 will be funded, and how the costs will affect those in our state least able to afford them. The bill has been changed to allow another two years to study the true costs and to figure out how to pay for them. I hope his constituents will urge Rep. Andriano to support this bill now and join in the discussion over the next two years as to how it can be improved before it is implemented. 

Spencer Putnam

Weybridge

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