The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the federal government's National Climate Assessment warn we have 12 years to address the underlying causes of climate change or we will be unable to tackle the most serious consequences, including destructive storms, flooding, increased temperatures, algae blooms, drought, and disease vectors.

We are concerned that if one received all of his or her information about the future of energy in this country from the News Tribune, one could come to the misguided view that clean energy is a losing proposition to address climate change. The negative consequences of fossil-fuel extraction have been ignored or downplayed in recent letters and commentaries.

While it is purported that renewable energy is expensive and unreliable, the reality is renewables are the cheapest energy available and already provide 20 percent of Minnesota's electricity in a reliable manner. As more renewables come onto our grid, adjustments and investments will need to be made, but our energy structure constantly needs adjustments and investments, as does any well-maintained public infrastructure.

Fossil-fuel industries have enjoyed generations of government subsidies. Isn't it time to focus more on renewable energies to address the underlying causes of climate change and protect our air and water? We continue to hear about gas explosions and oil spills around the world. Keep in mind, a "solar spill" means you are enjoying a nice day.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz has taken a reasonable and welcome pathway in addressing this issue and toward a clean-energy future for Minnesota with his 100 percent clean energy proposal. We at Minnesota Interfaith Power and Light appreciate when public servants support effective measures to address climate change. We encourage all our representatives to support clean-energy solutions, such as the governor's proposal, which are both forward-looking and reasonable.

Bret Pence, Sally Munger, and Melanie Grune

Duluth

 

The writers are members of Minnesota Interfaith Power and Light.