You can donate to relief efforts for the victims of Haiyan here.
Talk swirls about some kind of “deal” for the Keystone XL Pipeline. I don’t see it.
Political “realists” say Congress is incapable of passing a serious climate policy, period. That assessment becomes more valid every time the “realists” echo it, so I’m not going there. (I was expelled from their ranks long ago.) But a construction permit for a pipeline is nowhere near enough leverage to remove the obstacles to national climate policy. As a political matter, the President’s opponents want to have the Keystone fight more than they want to win it.
And it hardly seems necessary or wise to “trade” Keystone XL for regulation of climate pollution from existing power plants under the Clean Air Act. We already won the latter in the Supreme Court and the President as much as announced his intention to move forward in the State of the Union address. Sure, there’s a range of ultimate outcomes on the CO2 rules; but by the time we know how hard the Administration will really push for strong CO2 regs, this year’s Keystone decision will be long gone. If it’s supposed to strike some kind of political “balance,” it’s only on paper – the real political (economic) constituencies for the pipeline and power plant emissions are different.
Moreover, there’s a principle at stake (the Keystone Principle). It’s neither scientifically defensible nor morally acceptable to continue using scarce capital and time to invest in long-lived fossil fuel infrastructure. Regulating climate pollution from power plants is a vital step forward, and potentially a very big one. But in no world where we actually step up to the climate challenge does it justify a big, irreversible step in the wrong direction, like Keystone. There’s no symmetry, no justice there – just political games, and losing ones at that.
I was proud to join a big group of Heinz and Goldman prize-winners – including a bunch of personal heroes – in making the case to Secretary of State Kerry this week. We wrote:
May 8, 2013
The Honorable John Kerry, Secretary of State
Dear Mr. Secretary,
As recipients of Heinz Awards for our work in environment, energy, and public policy, and the Goldman Environmental Prize for grassroots environmental activism, we write to you with an urgent appeal to affirm America’s commitment to climate solutions by rejecting the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
We are deeply honored and humbled to have been recognized for our achievements. But we are acutely aware that despite your best efforts and ours, the climate crisis is now upon us. After a year of unprecedented weather extremes and disruption, this is no longer only about impacts in the future. It’s about social, economic, environmental, and moral consequences, now.
We do not lack for viable solutions. Public and private leaders in America are demonstrating that energy efficiency, clean energy, transportation choices, and a range of other strategies are practical and economic. We are using them to build healthier communities and stronger local economies. We can say this with confidence: sustainable, broadly-shared economic opportunity is possible as we make the necessary transition from fossil fuels to clean energy and efficient energy systems.
But we cannot make the transition overnight. It will take many decades of patient commitment and investment to complete it. And while “winning” a safe climate future is a long game, we can lose it very quickly — within President Obama’s second term. Continued investment in capital-intensive, long-lived fossil fuel infrastructure like Keystone XL will “lock in” emission trajectories that make catastrophic climate disruption inevitable. This is the hard bottom line of the International Energy Agency’s 2012 World Energy Outlook, which starkly warned that without an immediate shift in energy infrastructure investment, humanity would “lose forever” the chance to avert climate catastrophe.
Critics of the effort to stop the pipeline suggest that this is not “the right way” to deal with climate. It is certainly not sufficient, and it would arguably be unnecessary if we had a responsible national and global climate policies. You fought for such policy as a Senator, and we desperately need one. But stopping the pipeline is necessary to ensure that the problem remains solvable — that we don’t become irrevocably committed to emission trajectories that guarantee failure before we mobilize for success.
There is a strain of fatalism among some opinion leaders regarding Keystone (characteristic of prevailing attitudes toward climate generally): “Canada will develop the tar sands no matter what we do.” “We’ll get the oil from somewhere, so it might as well be North America.” “They’ll just find another route.” These objections are neither analytically defensible nor morally responsible. We can’t do everything to address climate disruption, but as the world’s biggest economy and the largest historic emitter, we can and should do a great deal. As a nation with unparalleled capacities for innovation and entrepreneurship, we can do even more. Facilitating accelerated investment in fossil fuel infrastructure is flatly inconsistent with this responsibility, and with the diplomatic effort to build our standing as an international leader and facilitator of global cooperation to tackle the climate challenge.
Keystone XL is a big, literal, conspicuous example of exactly what we must not do if we are genuinely committed to climate solutions. It is a fundamental element — a “keystone” if you will — of the industry’s plan to expand production of this carbon-intensive fuel from 2 million barrels per day to 6 million bpd by 2030. And as significant as its direct consequences are, Keystone XL is much more than a pipeline. It is a test of whether we will indeed, as the President said in his inaugural address, “respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations.”
The human consequences of unchecked climate disruption are almost unimaginably grave. We cannot continue to ignore — or, worse, aggravate — these consequences by considering decisions like Keystone outside of this moral context. Approving the permit would amount to affirming moral evasion, at exactly the moment that you and the President have argued so passionately for moral engagement.
We believe in the power and promise of climate solutions. We know they work; we know they are economically viable; and we know we can implement them. We believe it’s time to look our kids and grandkids — the prospective victims of still-preventable climate disasters — in the eye and say, “We will do what must be done to protect you. We will make this better.”
But they won’t believe us until we stop making it worse. That’s why we urge you in the strongest possible terms to reject the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
With hope and determination to build a healthy future, and the deepest respect for your leadership,
KC Golden, Policy Director Climate Solutions, 2012 Heinz Award in the Public Policy Category
Lois Gibbs, Executive Director Center for Health, Environment & Justice 1990 North American Goldman Environmental Prize Winner
John Luther Adams, Composer 2011 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Jane Akre, Independent News Group, LLC 2001 North American Goldman Environmental Prize Winner
P. Dee Boersma, Ph.D Wadsworth Endowed Chair in Conservation Science University of Washington, Department of Biology 2009 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Ralph Cavanagh, Energy Program Co-Director Natural Resources Defense Council 1997 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Terrence J. Collins, PhD, Hon FRSNZ Teresa Heinz Professor of Green Chemistry Director, Institute for Green Science Carnegie Mellon University, Department of Chemistry 2010 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Anne H. Ehrlich, Senior Research Scientist Stanford University, Department of Biology 1995 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Paul R. Ehrlich, Bing Professor of Population Studies Stanford University, Department of Biology 1995 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Thomas FitzGerald, Kentucky Resources Council, Inc. 2008 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Jerry F. Franklin, University of Washington, College of Forest Resources 2005 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Maria Gunnoe, Community Organizer 2009 North American Goldman Environmental Prize Winner 2012 Wallenberg Medal Winner
James Hansen, Columbia University, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences 2001 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Richard J Jackson, MD, MPH, Hon. AIA Former Director, CDC National Center for Environmental Health Professor & Chair, Environmental Health Science UCLA Fielding School of Public Health 2012 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Hilton Kelley, Executive Director & Founder Community In-power and Development Association, Inc. NPA Regional Health Equity Council: Chairman R-6 National Partnership for Action (NPA) to End Health Disparities Member National Environmental Justice Advisory Council Member 2009-2011 2011 North American Goldman Environmental Prize Winner
Joanie Kleypas, Marine Scientist 2011 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Elizabeth Kolbert, Journalist 2010 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Peggy M. Shepard, Executive Director WE ACT for Environmental Justice, Inc. 2004 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Jack Spengler, Akira Yamaguchi Professor on Environmental Health and Human Habitation Director of the Center for Health and the Global Environment Harvard University, School of Public Health 2012 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
George M. Woodwell, Woods Hole Research Center 1997 Heinz Award in the Environment Category
Coal export is kind of like the swimming pool game “Marco Polo”: if you open your eyes, it ruins the whole game.
Wyoming Governor Matt Mead emerged as a stalwart defender of the eyes-closed rule last week, urging the White House Council on Environmental Quality to avoid any consideration of climate impacts in federal evaluation of coal exports.
He called assessing greenhouse gas impacts of coal export a “novel use of NEPA as a political opinion piece on global climate change.”
The National Environmental Policy Act is primarily a guide to procedure for environmental analysis, rather than a set of substantive requirements. Its most basic function is to provide decision-makers with a thorough assessment of environmental impacts: Whatever you’re going to do, says NEPA, do it in the daylight.
No, says Governor Mead. Coal export requires darkness. Open assessment of climate impacts would be “novel”, “political.” Using the nation’s pre-eminent environmental disclosure law to analyze the effects of the nation’s biggest fossil fuel development proposal on the nation’s biggest environmental problem would “undermine the fundamental fairness of the process.”
It’s a stunning admission, when you think about it: Governor Mead is all but conceding that coal export cannot withstand an honest evaluation of its biggest impact. It puts the lie to the coal industry’s unsupportable claims that coal export will have no effect on the amount of coal burned in Asia (see distraction 2., in “King Coal’s tragic puppet show, part 4: Field guide to distractions”.)
In a letter to CEQ, Governors Kitzhaber and Inslee called for full disclosure: ”We believe the decisions to continue and expand coal leasing from federal lands and authorize the export of that coal are likely to lead to long-term investments in coal generation in Asia, with air quality and climate impacts in the United States that dwarf almost any other action the federal government could take in the foreseeable future,” they wrote.
And that’s exactly why Governor Mead won’t have any analysis of those impacts. A full, thorough, honest review of the costs and benefits of coal export proposals will sink them. So opponents fight on for light, while Governor Mead champions the only circumstance in which coal export has a chance: utter climate darkness.
The big President’s Day rally on the National Mall is more than a Keystone pipeline protest. It’s a statement of principle for climate action.
After a year of unprecedented destruction due to weather extremes, the climate fight is no longer just about impacts in the future. It’s about physical and moral consequences, now. And Keystone isn’t simply a pipeline in the sand for the swelling national climate movement. It’s a moral referendum on our willingness to do the simplest thing we must do to avert catastrophic climate disruption: Stop making it worse.
Specifically and categorically, we must cease making large, long-term capital investments in new fossil fuel infrastructure that “locks in” dangerous emission levels for many decades. Keystone is a both a conspicuous example of that kind of investment and a powerful symbol for the whole damned category.
It’s true that stopping a single pipeline – even one as huge and odious as Keystone – will not literally “solve” climate disruption. No single action will do that, any more than refusing to sit on the back of a single bus literally ended segregation. The question – for Keystone protestors as it was for Rosa Parks – is whether the action captures and communicates a principle powerful enough to inspire and sustain an irresistible movement for sweeping social change.
Stopping Keystone nails the core principle for climate responsibility, by preventing investments that make climate disruption irrevocably worse. Again, it’s not just that burning tar sands oil produces a lot of emissions; it’s that long-term capital investments like Keystone (and coal plants, and coal export facilities) “lock in” those dangerous emissions for decades and make catastrophic climate disruption inevitable.
Now, if you are a fossil fuel company, “locking in dangerous emissions” means locking in profits. It is your business strategy, precisely. For the rest of us, it’s a one-way, non-refundable ticket to centuries of hell and high water. We must not buy that ticket.
This is the Keystone Principle. It emerges from multiple lines of scientific and economic research, most notably the International Energy Agency’s 2012 World Energy Outlook, which starkly warned that the chance to avert catastrophic climate disruption would be “lost forever” without an immediate shift away from fossil fuel infrastructure investment.
But it doesn’t take a supercomputer to confirm that the Keystone Principle is basic common sense. It’s step one for getting out of a hole: Stop digging. A comprehensive strategy for global climate solutions called “Design to Win” put the point succinctly: “First, don’t lose.” The choice is clear and binary: Do it and we’re toast. So don’t.
In contrast, the many things we must do to advance positive climate solutions – clean energy, more efficient cars and buildings, better transportation choices – are full of grey areas. Implementing them is inherently slow, incremental, and subject to tradeoffs based on economic and other factors. Should new fuel economy standards make cars 80% more efficient or 90%? Over what period of time? The answers are judgment calls, not moral absolutes. But when it comes to stopping Keystone and other fossil fuel infrastructure investments, the choice is stark, clear.
“Climate solutions” are millions of Yeses and many shades of green, over a long period of time. But they also require a few bright red Nos, right now. These Nos are, you might say, the “keystone” for responding to the climate crisis, as in “something on which associated things [like, say, all efforts to avert catastrophic climate disruption] depend.” No amount of clean energy investment will stave off disaster unless we stop feeding the fossil fuel beast with capital now.
Most importantly, as we enter the era of climate consequences, the Keystone Principle has moral power. Many lives were lost, and millions disrupted, by Superstorm Sandy. Most of the counties in America were declared disaster areas last year due to drought. Last month, parents in Australia sheltered their children from “tornadoes of fire” by putting them in the ocean. This is what climate disruption looks like.
Now that the faces of the victims are regular features of the daily news, what will we say to them? And what will we say to our children – the prospective victims of still-preventable disasters? Defying the Keystone Principle is like saying “Sorry, you’re out of luck. We will use our laws, our time, and our money to make it irretrievably worse.”
President Obama has begun to carefully edge away from the moral bankruptcy of this position. As he said in his inaugural address: “We will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations.”
But no one will believe him, or us, until we stop making it worse. That’s what Keystone is about. It’s not just a pipeline. It’s a principle.
I bought the original stabilization wedge format for presenting climate solutions hook, line and sinker. At the slightest provocation, I will administer a “wedgie” – or as my co-workers call it, a “napkin-point presentation” – using the famous wedge schematic to illustrate this or that point about emission trajectories or the effect of a particular energy policy on emissions over time. A giant wedge banner hanging from a building on the central square in Copenhagen filled me with nerdy pride.
But something always bothered me about wedges, and now I know what it is. While we were busy getting our wedges on – passing good policies and implementing solutions – we were also busy investing in new infrastructure that locked in emission increases. We’ve been betting on solutions and the problem simultaneously. The net result is somewhere short of treading water, which means getting further away from a safe stabilization path. You can review the non-progress in “Rethinking Wedges,” published recently in Environmental Research Letters.
The problem is “Business As Usual” (BAU) — the upward-sloping emissions curve at the top of the wedges – and everything it represents about our climate denial. Among its many objectionable qualities, it is imaginary, implausible, immoral, BS. Yes, it’s what we’re doing. But it’s delusional to project what we’re doing out for 50 years. It’s kind of like the economist flying in a 4 engine plane that loses power in one engine, then another, then a third – each time cutting the plane’s speed in half – who said: “At this rate, we’ll be up here almost forever!”
“Business as usual” is not possible; global temperature increases that would result from sustained emission growth over 50 years would be “incompatible with organized global community,” without which we wouldn’t keep generating emissions at ever-increasing rates. It is hard to imagine business as usual, say, amid the “tornadoes of fire” engulfing Australia right now.
Tom Friedman recently said we need to begin “tapping on the brakes” to avoid “the climate cliff” by passing a carbon tax. But the brakes don’t work very well when we’ve got the other foot on the BAU accelerator.
Is it possible to conceive of some bizarre dystopia in which civilization falls apart but we nevertheless manage to keep increasing our emissions? Oh, gosh, maybe, but do we have to? It doesn’t seem very analytically sound to me. And it’s certainly a moral disaster – to imagine that we just keep stoking the fire as it burns up everything dear. Calling this “business as usual” is both intellectually weak and ethically numb.
We smacked our head into the folly of indefinitely increasing consumption curves in the Northwest, when we bought off on the ill-fated “WPPSS” nuclear power program – which touched off the largest municipal bond default in history at the time. And of course we’ve learned more than we ever wanted to know about bubbles in recent years.
“Business as usual” is a lie. It’s a form of climate denial. So why do we use it as our baseline? Sure, it’s “the path we’re on” so in some sense it’s what we have to divert from. But it can’t go where it appears to be headed. It leads inexorably to some kind of forced drop off. We’ll never get anywhere good until we flatly reject it.
No, let me rephrase: We’ll never get anywhere good unless we reject it now, because after a few more years of BAU, stabilization at tolerable levels will be impossible. This is the bottom line of the IEA World Energy Outlook. We don’t have enough time (or money) to keep investing in the problem as we invest in solutions.
There are plenty of grey areas – questions about timing and economics and technology – in the climate solutions game. But this one is black and white, the clear moral line in the shifting sands of climate politics:
We cannot in good conscience continue to make long-term investments that make it worse.
Or, if you will, we should make today’s emission levels the new BAU, smacking down anything that drives emissions higher. And by “smacking down,” of course, we’re not primarily talking about a change in our analytic assumptions. It’s a political change. It’s a moral shift. It’s taking a stance — a hopeful and unyielding one. (But that doesn’t mean we can’t graph it!:)
THis is what Keystone’s about. It’s what Power Past Coal is about. It’s what Do the Math is about. Climate solutions just isn’t a credible proposition until we swear off additional aggravation of the climate crisis – until we declare that the old business as usual is dead.
(One hates to introduce ambiguity when one is drawing lines in the sand, but it must be said that our standards for rejecting fossil fuel infrastructure investment should in fairness be different for rich and poor countries. The Prime Minister of India once proposed that their emissions-per-capita should rise and ours should fall until they reach the same level; then we can all move toward stabilization together. You can see the justice in this. Thing is, then we’d all be toast. [Just toast though - more equitably burnt.] Whatever minimal fossil fuel investment is possible between now and blowing our global emissions budget – maybe four years’ worth at current rates, according to the IEA – surely “belongs” to the least developed countries. But for us: no more, period. In fact, if we accept a flat global BAU as a baseline, rich country BAUs would have to be downward sloping. And then of course, we need to set sail for the stabilization pathway immediately, abandoning the new BAU at the same moment that we re-imagined it.)
“This is not speculation,” said Bill Ruckelshaus. “This is chemistry.”
Yesterday, a blue ribbon panel appointed by Governor Chris Gregoire and co-chaired by Ruckelshaus and Jay Manning released a far-reaching assessment and action plan on ocean acidification (or “OA,” which has been called “global warming’s evil twin” since they share a primary root cause – CO2 emissions from burning fossil fuels.) The Washington Post covers it here.
It was the oysters that blew the whistle. “Between 2005 and 2009, disastrous production failures at Pacific Northwest oyster hatcheries signaled a shift in ocean chemistry that has profound implications for Washington’s marine environment,” begins the report’s executive summary. “The problem, in a nutshell, was ocean acidification.”
The declining pH (rising acidity) of the ocean can affect a wide range of organisms and life processes, including photosynthesis, growth, respiration, and reproduction. The most dramatic effects so far appear to be on the “calcifiers” – organsims that use calcium carbonate to make shells, skeletons, and other body parts. These include delicious favorites - scallops, mussels, clams, oysters, kelp, and such. But more disturbingly for the whole marine food web, acidification is also threatening pteropds – tiny sea snails that play a vital primary role in marine food supplies. Rising acidity is literally eating away at the foundations of the ocean food pyramid.
The panel’s recommendations include a variety of measures to reduce local sources of pollution that contribute to acidification, including wastewater discharges and nutrient runoff. This adds powerful new impetus to the already-vital work of the Puget Sound Partnership.
But to the panel and the Governor’s credit, neither the report nor the Executive Order implementing its recommendations shy away from the biggest driver: global emissions of carbon dioxide. These emissions are changing the chemistry of the oceans as dramatically as they’re changing the chemistry of the atmosphere. Average acidity (measure by hydrogen ion concentration) has already increased 30%.
State government could have balked, claiming little jurisdiction over the global energy investment decisions that drive carbon dioxide emissions. But the Governor, in classic Gregoire style, came with her sleeves rolled up. “Let’s get to work,” she told the high-powered audience assembled for the release. “Let’s lead the world in addressing this global challenge.”
Critics might charge that Washington State is such a small part of the emissions problem that any state action is a futile gesture. In an increasingly cynical political culture, this brand of irresponsible defeatism may be the most potent strategy for those determined to prolong fossil fuel dependence and undermine clean energy solutions. But Washington’s not having any of it.
The sound of the truth alone – in an era of pathological denial about the dimensions of the climate (and OA) challenge – is a potent change agent. And while of course no jurisdiction can solve it unilaterally, every step forward improves the prospects for other solutions. Especially now, as political will for climate action rebuilds, this sharp focus on science and solutions is a breath of fresh air.
Meanwhile, the film Chasing Ice is puncturing denial with the overwhelming power of spectacular, visual images of the Artic melting. The long, slow, breathtaking sequences of massive ice collapses create a space where all the yapping and equivocating and denial fade and ultimately disappear. The effect is like being left alone with your conscience.
Check out the powerful impact it seems to have had on a former climate denier in this video:
Shocks of recognition, jolts of reality, are coursing through our information stream. Can they defibrillate the body politic before it slips toward terminal climate unconsciousness?
When his monster came to life, Dr. Frankenstein said in manic derangement: “In the name of God, now I know what it feels like to be a God!”
Today is about rescue. Tomorrow is about recovery. You can help now, here.
But with fateful political choices looming, we cannot hesitate to say this: Extreme weather is juiced by climate disruption. It is inflicted by the people who buy our elections so as to ensure our dependence on fossil fuels. The specter of coal ads interspersed among the disaster footage is beyond ironic; it’s sick.
If there is some danger in appearing opportunistic by “using” Sandy to call attention to the climate crisis, it is more than offset by the danger of perpetuating climate silence.
A just god would do more than attend to its monster’s victims. It would stop it. And it would create something different.
Today’s victims are the priority today, and we must help them.
But what about the generations of victims we can save now, if we stand up and wage the clean energy revolution that will spare some of them? Condemning them with denial – or silence – is no way to show our compassion for today’s victims.
The “rising of the seas,” Sandy bellowed back at Mitt Romney, is not to be mocked. Nor will it be placated by the President’s climate silence. I’m not being poetic. The less we speak, the more climate will speak for itself. If we fail to deal, it gets worse. Actually.
The blogosphere (if not the mainstream media) is alive with useful stuff on the Sandy-climate connection.
Climate Solutions Communication Director Kimberly Larson captures it here.
Climate Progress has thorough treatment here.
Sandy herself finds a voice here.
Forecast the Facts battles silence here.
Elizabeth Kolbert weighs in here.
“I had that question for all of you climate change people,” said Candy Crowley, in the post-debate coverage last night. But she didn’t ask it because, “you know, again, we knew that the economy was still the main thing.” (Stephen Lacey has the full scoop on the debate at Climate Progress. Or save time and just poke yourself in the eye with a stick.)
The candidates didn’t actually contradict climate reality per se of course. They didn’t talk about it at all. And the moderator sat on the question. This silence plays a vital role in the larger ecosystem of denial, at least as important as the explicit disinformation campaigns. And competing to demonstrate who would be the most relentless fossil fuel extractor, while remaining silent on climate — well that’s a pretty potent dose of denial, even if its not overt.
OK, “climate change people” now what? (And, WTH, is there some other kind of person? Does everybody else gain immunity from Hell and High Water by being some other kind of people, like, what, “climate stasis people”? Heck, let’s quit this beat!).
After watching the Presidential candidates almost come to blows over who would dig, drill, and burn more fossil fuel, I woke up with a massive headache.
I spent my first hour awake in numb silence. That never works for me.
So, Dr. Golden’s prescription after a hard night of watching our “leaders” wage climate denial:
1) More – and more viscous – coffee. Peets Major Dickason’s Blend. Grrrrrr.
2) Sign up and spread the word to Help End the Climate Silence.
3) Crowdfund this great short video of young activists in Florida calling on the Presidential candidates to get real about climate in the final debate.
4) Watch Bill Moyers interview with James Balog, the Chasing Ice photographer.
5) Sign up for Do the Math, which begins November 7 in Seattle
And as always, every day is better, the more time we spend on our own little fossil fuel divestment campaigns: I’m going for a bike ride at lunch.
As I have harangued, it’s wrong and self-defeating to back down from talking about climate. Political candidates and leaders need to level with us. Climate advocates should be explicit about it, even when the wind is blowing right in our face.
And oh, BTW, it isn’t.
The Yale Project on Climate Change Communication has just published The Political Benefits of Taking a Pro-Climate Stand, which finds:
- A majority of all registered voters (55 percent) say they will consider candidates’ views on global warming when deciding how to vote.
- Among these climate change issue voters, large majorities believe global warming is happening and support action by the U.S. to reduce global warming, even if it has economic costs.
- Independents lean toward “climate action” and look more like Democrats than Republicans on the issue.
- A pro-climate action position wins votes among Democrats and Independents, and has little negative impact with Republican voters.
- Policies to reduce America’s dependence on fossil fuels and promote renewable energy are favored by a majority of registered voters across party lines.
You don’t need political permission to talk about a crisis.
But just in case, the full study is here.
Reality may not be a fashionable messenger. But it is extremely patient.
“Still don’t believe in climate change? Then you’re either deep in denial or delirious from the heat,” said Eugene Robinson in yesterday’s Washington Post, as the nation’s capital dug out from the freakish windstorm that left nearly half the area without power.
Jeremy Symons has good play-by-play on the unfolding apocalypse at his National Wildlife Federation blog.
Not to worry, though, ExxonMobil’s CEO says we can just adapt.
Where’s Winnie when you need him? Churchill famously said, “The era of procrastination, of half-measures, of soothing and baffling expedients, of delays, is coming to a close. In its place, we are entering a period of consequences.”
What he didn’t seem to anticipate is that the “soothing and baffling” expedients, etc., might not “come to a close.” They can persist and grow more baffling, deeper and deeper into the period of consequences….