When everyone works together for a cleaner, more sustainable future, we all win.

Whether or not climate change happens is not even a question – of course it does. It has been the story of our planet since the beginning of time. Whether or not human actions are significantly affecting negative climate change is perhaps more of a question, but that question is more divisive than helpful. The most important question that should unify us across parties, geography, and lifestyles is this:

Can human actions, can our creativity and technology, reverse damaging climate change and improve the environment and our experience of it?

Across all aisles, the answer surely must be a resounding yes.

Since the mid-to-late 20th Century, reasonable regulation and a competitive and challenging American capitalistic and activist spirit has improved air quality, water quality, food quality, and general quality of life. Even as our gross domestic product rose by 275%, aggregate emissions in the air dropped by 74% and “unhealthy air days” dropped by 62%. The journey from the Clean Water Act has significantly improved water quality, including increasing the share of rivers safe for fishing by 12%. Americans have successfully turned the force of the market against bad actors in corporate offices, and those at the top are beginning to be swayed, to realize that the best interest for their companies is the best interest of humanity.

We know that capitalism works to improve general quality of life and lift people out of poverty. And Americans in increasing numbers are putting capitalism to work against climate change via consumer activism. Now, it’s time to turn capitalism on full force to win the unseen war for our planet, and implement carbon dividends. I support the four-point plan as outlined by the YCCD.

  1. Price carbon (and/or implement a hybrid cap-and-trade system).
  2. Rebate the revenue.
  3. Roll back regulations.
  4. Compel other countries to follow our lead.