LETTER: Supports Initiative 1631 against carbon pollution

Initiative 1631 on the ballot this November, would impose fees on carbon pollution and invest the proceeds in clean energy and investments in community and environmental adaptation and resilience.

In the Peninsula Daily News of Aug. 26, the “Reject carbon tax” letter writer attacked the initiative, quoting extensively the words of one William Happer, an emeritus physics professor at Princeton University.

Happer had a distinguished career in atomic physics, but he’s no climate scientist.

Last year, the Guardian newspaper contacted one of his Princeton colleagues, Professor Michael Oppenheimer who actually is a climate scientist with scores of peer-reviewed articles on the subject in leading journals.

Asked to evaluate Happer’s opinions on climate change, Oppenheimer said, “With respect to climate science and scientists,[Happer] is not only unknowledgeable but appears to have become unmoored.” [The Guardian; Feb. 20, 2017].

Voters need to be steered not by “unmoored” climate change deniers but by the vast majority of scientists who study our climate, and by the evidence, right before our eyes, of extreme weather events — record high temperatures globally, unprecedented drought in Australia, forest fires and smoke engulfing the west.

Initiative 1631 is a measured, prudent response to a genuine crisis.

Please vote “yes” in November.

Marc Sullivan,


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