BURLINGTON, Vt., Nov. 1 – A United Nations panel on Sunday is set to issue a major report detailing what a draft called “the likelihood of severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts” of global warming.
U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said the new report from the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is expected to make the strongest case yet for decisive action to curb greenhouse gas emissions.
“The scientific community across the world is sounding the alarm. Climate change is real and it will have devastating consequences around the globe unless we act boldly and decisively,” said Sanders, a member of the Senate environment and energy committees.
The latest U.N. report is expected to provide a foundation for international climate negotiations next year in Paris. The report will integrate findings based on more than 30,000 scientific papers on climate change and climate science that already have shown that human activity – particularly burning fossil fuels – is the main cause of climate change.
Scientists also say warming could exceed 10 degrees Fahrenheit in the United States by the end of this century. Vermont’s temperatures are projected to rise by roughly 3 degrees by 2050.
Sanders has proposed a fee on carbon and methane emissions. The measure is cosponsored by Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. Their bill would help create millions of jobs transforming the U.S. energy system away from fossil fuels to sustainable energy sources such as wind, solar, geothermal and biomass. Another Sanders bill would end tax breaks and subsidies for oil and coal companies. A companion measure in the House is sponsored by Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.).
Both ideas are backed by scientists and leading economists but blocked by Republicans in Congress. “Many Republicans now respond to the crisis of climate change by saying they are not scientists and therefore have no opinion,” Sanders said. “Well, most of them are not doctors but they respect doctors’ opinions on cancer and heart disease. Most of them are not generals but they respect the opinions of our military leaders. It’s time for them to respect the views of the scientific community on climate change.”
To read more about the Sanders-Boxer legislation, click here.
To read more about the Sanders-Ellison legislation, click here.
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