With all the tumultuous events swirling around our political neighborhood, it’s natural to take our eyes off other parts of the world. Local events capture our attention because that’s what impacts us most directly.

While we’re absorbed with impeachment and with Syria, it’s easy to overlook one of the world’s most calamitous weather disasters ever because it has taken place on the other side of the globe from us.

The enormity of Typhoon Hagibis in Japan cannot be overstated. Seven million people in its path were urged to relocate. Seven million! Widespread devastation covers almost the entirety of Japan’s main island of Honshu, where Tokyo is located.

Hagibis is yet one more indication why all of us need to step up to address climate change.

We here in the U.S. can urge our leaders in Congress to pass the bipartisan Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (HR763), which places a fee on carbon production and returns all the revenue to consumers. Independent studies have shown it to be the most effective way to drop carbon emissions well below the Paris Accord goal, while creating jobs, improving public health and cleansing the air.

Let’s not wait for another Hagibis to devastate our own neighborhood.

Gerald Elias, Salt Lake City