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Letter: Utah leaders missing out on economic boom from renewable energy
First Published Apr 09 2014 01:01 am • Last Updated Apr 09 2014 10:04 am

Re Sunday’s Tribune letter "Paltry solar farm" and op-ed piece "RMP is stuck in a coal-centric mentality": I might have given the op-ed piece a different title such as "Utah is addicted to oil!" Oh, wait, those were George Bush’s words. Let’s try "Utah is stuck in a fossil fuel mentality."

I worry that Utah, with some of the worst air quality in the country, is falling further and further behind the rest of the world by refusing to mandate substantive reductions in carbon emissions. Utah has been unwilling to say "no" to new proposals for extracting and refining fossil fuels and does not consider the social and environmental cost of them by way of a revenue-neutral carbon fee and dividend.

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Many states are moving away from fossil fuels toward renewable energy sources. Economic models demonstrate that development of alternative, renewable energy is labor intensive (job producing) whereas the fossil fuel industry is much less so.

It just makes good economic sense as well as reducing pollution and addressing climate change. It’s a win/win proposition that many Utah leaders are too shortsighted to understand.

Beth Allen

Salt Lake City

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