Letter: Real climate solutions require bipartisan efforts

To the Editor:

Americans know that being good stewards of our natural resources and protecting the climate is important not just for today, but for the country our children will inherit tomorrow.

How we respond to these issues impacts nearly every aspect of our society and economy, from farming and agriculture to disaster preparedness and emergency response to our critical infrastructure.

Like any other issue, to tackle it we need elected officials from both parties from the municipal level up to the federal government to work together.

Similarly to how Republicans and Democrats on the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW) are working together on the Surface Transportation Reauthorization Bill that invests in clean energy and carbon reduction as critical components of America’s infrastructure. It shows progress toward finding a broader compromise on infrastructure.

Republicans must continue to lead discussions that promote pro-growth, common-sense solutions to the environment and climate that support local jobs, create economic opportunity and strengthen the country.

Fortunately, Hoosiers can take great pride in knowing that Senators Todd Young and Mike Braun are helping provide smart, pragmatic climate leadership in the U.S. Senate. Both senators are working across the aisle to advance innovative solutions that address our climate concerns while strengthening economic prospects across Indiana communities.

The recently re-introduced Growing Climate Solutions Act, authored by Sen. Braun and cosponsored by a bipartisan coalition of legislators, would help farmers and foresters in Indiana and throughout the country access existing carbon credit markets by creating a USDA-run certification program.

By leveraging the free market to incentivize the adoption of climate-friendly agriculture techniques, the Growing Climate Solutions Act gives farmers a critical source of new revenue while advancing our carbon reduction goals nationally.

Importantly, the Growing Climate Solutions Act seeks to empower farmers to be a part of the climate solution, rather than mandating any specific changes to their operations.

It’s an important bill and would help farmers adopt more innovative conservation techniques that reduce air pollution, including planting cover crops and using no-till practices.

Both Senators Young and Braun have also been supporters of the Trillion Trees and Natural Carbon Storage Act, legislation that would put tree-planting at the center of an ambitious plan to capture and store emissions.

These are the kind of innovative, forward thinking solutions we need to see more of from Republican leaders in Congress if we are going to tackle the problem of climate change in a pro-growth, economically feasible way.

Senators Young and Braun should continue working across the aisle to advance bipartisan policies that will increase our commitment to sustainability through broad investments in natural climate solutions, clean energy and infrastructure.

Jim Sullivan