They’re not one of us | AspenTimes.com
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They’re not one of us

Dear Editor:Aspen is a small place, but it’s a great base camp for thinking globally and acting locally. Because we’re an international crossroads, our reach here can exceed our grasp – and when it comes to national and international news, ranging from foreign policy to breast cancer, it often does.No issue should generate more heated response in this valley than climate change, and in calling for the Aspen Chamber Resort Association to secede from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Micah Parkin is not only taking an environmentally enlightened view, he’s talking enlightened self-interest (“It’s time for ACRA to take a stand,” guest opinion, Feb. 25, The Aspen Times).Aspen Skiing Co. CEO Mike Kaplan nailed the numbers in a 2009 blog when he wrote, “Climate change impacts Aspen’s bottom line. For the $6 billion ski industry, and the hundreds of thousands of people who make their living directly or indirectly from it, the stakes are huge.” Without powder to the people, virtually all of us here in the Roaring Fork Valley would be left high and dry.Should it choose to become an ex-patriate of the U.S. chamber, the Aspen chamber would find itself in respected company. Multiple utilities – including Pacific Gas & Electric in California and Exelon in Chicago and Philadelphia – have left the U.S. chamber in protest of its climate policies. Nike, Yahoo and Apple also have resigned.The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has, in Parkin’s words, “opposed every piece of legislation designed to slow the onset of global warming.” That’s not an Aspen idea, and the Aspen Chamber Resort Association should respond by heeding Parkin’s call to get out now.Nicolette ToussaintCarbondale


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