Letters to the Editor, Aug. 30, 2019

Turnout; fires and trade; climate

Highlight reasons for not voting

The last count information I had (Aug. 8) on Bellevue’s voting in the most recent election (Primary Election held on Aug. 6) showed that only 31.8 percent of the city’s registered voters cast their ballots. Couple that with the likely fact that only about 80 percent of the city’s eligible voters are registered.

So it is of only mild interest to read Samantha Pak’s lengthy writing (“Citizenship means more than the right to vote,” published on Aug. 23, 2019) about recently “minted” (to use Pak’s word) citizens and their participation in the election process. What would be of more compelling interest would be for Pak to interview and report on, say, 10 eligible Bellevue voters who chose not to vote, and publicize their reasons for not voting. Perhaps such information would provide your readers and city elected officials with more useful and actionable indications of what they might do to increase the participation of a broader range of the city’s eligible voting population in the city’s election/voting process.

David F. Plummer


Fight Amazon fires together

The Amazon rainforest is on fire. Intentional human deforestation for creating crop land is a major cause of this tragedy for all human beings and creatures on earth.

Some European countries (e.g., Germany), have decided to put financial pressure on Brazil, home to more than 60 percent of Amazon rainforest. It will take much more for the Brazil government to feel the pain and get onto a genuine track of curbing deforestation.

The U.S. and China, as top export destinations for Brazil, can be especially effective in “convincing” the Brazil government to do the right thing. For the U.S. and China to work together, the trade war between the U.S. and China needs to go. It has caused a ton of casualties (soybean growers, farmers who grow everything else and everyday consumers). Nobody seems to be winning from this trade war. We can call it quits now.

Once the trade war is out, the normal business relationship between U.S. farmers and Chinese market gets resumed. China continues importing soybeans and beef from the U.S. Meanwhile, China stops importing soybeans and beef from Brazil. Brazil will feel the pressure because soybeans and beef are top export items for Brazil. If Brazil needs more help than that, it has plenty of other exports that the U.S., China and other countries can play with.

Amazon rainforest fires are the enemy for all. Let’s work together to fight them.

Lei Wu


Support climate policies

The Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (https://citizensclimatelobby.org/energy-innovation-and-carbon-dividend-act/), EICDA; HR763, is seen by the majority of the world’s climate experts and leading economists as the critical next legislative step in the fight against climate change because it is the most effective strategy that is politically achievable.

With less than a dozen years remaining (https://www.ipcc.ch/2018/10/08/summary-for-policymakers-of-ipcc-special-report-on-global-warming-of-1-5c-approved-by-governments/) in which to bring about a massive change in fossil fuel use, the public deserves to be educated about remedies such as the EICDA. Rather than taxing consumers, a fee on fuel producers is used based on their product’s carbon content, including crude oil, natural gas or coal. The fees are returned to legal American residents as monthly cash dividends which offset resulting increases in consumer prices.

The body formed to administer the EICDA is designed to have low administrative costs and to sunset once emission targets are achieved. Hence, the EICDA will not create an enduring bureaucracy.

The EICDA is currently under review in several House committees and is expected to be introduced to the Senate in relatively near future. Please contact your representative in Washington, D.C. (https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representative) to encourage them to support the EICDA.

David Schwartz