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Brewers join climate efforts

This primary election season we were pleased to hear local candidates talk about many important issues facing the greater Rochester area. One issue that was glaringly absent, however, was climate change. In that vein, we want to bring attention to the work that your neighbors – and neighborhood pubs – have been doing to generate political will to fight man-made climate change.

Over the past year, members of the local Citizens Climate Lobby chapter have been working on several outreach campaigns to generate support for revenue-neutral carbon fee and dividend policies. These policies place a fee on carbon at the source and return those fees as dividends to citizens to offset increased energy costs. They are widely seen by economists and climate scientists as the most effective way to immediately begin mitigating the impact of climate change.

One of these outreach campaigns has been to local brewers, who depend on hops, barley, and other supply chains that are already being affected by a changing climate. In recognition of how disruptive these changes will be, 126 brewers across the US have endorsed carbon fee and dividend as of July 1. We are especially proud to announce that local brewers Lock 32 Brewing Company, Seven Story Brewing, and Swiftwater Brewing Company are among them. As CCL continues to increase public support and political will for carbon fee and dividend, we raise our glasses to these breweries, and toast their willingness to be local leaders in this movement.

KATHLEEN DONOVAN, ROCHESTER

Thank you, America

There's a lot of room to be critical about the country I live in. But that I'm allowed to do so is cause for me to be grateful.

My elders worry about the contrasting values we have with the people here, but some of the values we share are as old as this country. As an Ahmadi Muslim, the struggles with religious freedom are all too real for me, as it was for the immigrants who laid the foundation to the United States of America. This country was founded as a haven for people to be able to practice their faith in peace and express themselves in words or actions without violating the penal code.

Of course, America has to answer for a lot, but that does not discredit the fact that today I can call myself Muslim, and could have done 200 years ago, without breaking the law. And for that I am grateful; thank you, America. 

MUHAMMAD AKIF QADEER, CHATHAM, NEW JERSEY

(The writer is a student at RIT and a member of the Muslim Writer's Guild of America.)

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