Global warming represents threats to agriculture, as well as economic opportunities
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Climate change is threatening pillars of the Colorado economy, including the ski industry and agriculture, according to Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), who this week encouraged the chairs of all the Senate committees he sits on to address the issue by holding hearings during the current session of Congress.
Bennet serves on the Senate Finance and Agriculture committees and the and HELP Subcommittee on Children and Families.
“Between Superstorm Sandy, last summer’s wildfires and a persistent drought, extreme weather events fueled by our climate constitute substantial challenges for families across the country,” Bennet wrote in a letter to Chairwoman Kay Hagan, chair of the HELP Subcommittee on Children and Families.
Potential health-related threats include death and Illness from heat waves, respiratory illness from rising temperatures, and the wider spread of infectious diseases like West Nile Virus and Dengue Fever, Bennet said in his letter to Sen. Kay Hagan, chair of the Senate HELP Subcommittee on Children and Families. A hearing would provide a chance to “shed light on the health impacts of climate change, particularly on our children and families,” Bennet said.
Bennet also outlined forthcoming economic opportunities as the nation combats climate change.
“As the Finance Committee begins its work to reform the tax code, it is my hope that it will look for ways to prioritize low-carbon energy and energy efficiency,” Bennet wrote to Chairman Max Baucus. “Tax reform provides a unique opportunity to prioritize technology and energy production aimed at reducing the worst effects of a changing climate.”
Bennet, who has been seeking relief for Colorado farmers affected by last summer’s drought, said extreme weather events pose a significant challenge for agricultural producers and rural communities across the country.