What are three things that we can do in the next two years to improve our environment?
Response from Arthur
Environmental protection means economic change. The people who oppose environmental safeguards do not prefer and ugly or endangered environment; they just prefer to protect their own economic gain over the general good. So three things that I’d like to work on in Congress over the next two years are:
- So long as coal is not a clean fuel, we need a transition plan to get away from it. Part of this is moving towards clean renewable fuels, but we also need to invest in job retraining for the many people who make their livelihood in mining, transporting, and utilizing coal. There are very rich traditions in the Appalachian culture and we must do our best to protect them while providing good job opportunities for those individuals whose families have been tied to coal for generations.
- We need to continue the expansion of wind and solar power. Both of these methods are becoming more and more affordable and prices will drop even more as demand for these methods increases. This transition is in the best interests of all Americans and we should continue tax breaks that the federal government gives for their further use.
- As we rebuild and expand our infrastructure, we need to include cost-effective mass transit in our planning. High speed inter-city rail traffic can vastly improve our quality of life while allowing us to use a minimal amount of fuel per passenger mile. The same is true with light-rail in our metropolitan areas. We have much building to do which will help our economy and if we “build smart” we will also be protecting our environment.