There can be no doubt in my own mind — none at all — that climate change must become the pre-eminent issue of the 2020 presidential campaign.
The incumbent president calls the issue a “hoax.” Donald Trump says it’s a figment of some plot concocted by China to undermine the U.S. fossil fuel industry.
The president is as wrong about this as he is about damn near everything. Except his error bodes grim for the country and the planet.
Most of the Democrats running for their party’s nomination have spoken with varying degrees of eloquence and detail about how they intend to tackle climate change if they are elected in 2020.
I am waiting to hear some more detail about what they intend to do and how they propose to pay for it.
I simply know this: Earth’s climate is changing and it is imperative that the world’s most powerful industrial power and the nation that is chiefly responsible for humankind’s role in changing the climate to do something about it … now!
Climate change deniers endanger the nation. Do you remember that idiotic stunt U.S. Jim Inhofe, the Oklahoma Republican, pulled on the Senate floor some years back? It was cold in Washington one winter, so Sen. Inhofe brought a snowball onto the Senate floor to prove, by golly, that Earth’s climate isn’t getting warmer. Of course, Inhofe conflated weather with climate, ignoring the science that separates the two phenomena.
The scientific community is speaking with increasing sameness on this the gravity of this issue. Climatologists tell us that it well might be too late for humanity to change the trend that already is developing. My response? OK, but that doesn’t mean we do nothing!
The Trump administration is backing away from air-quality emission standards. It has been silent on the issue of deforestation. The president nominated and the Senate confirmed an Environmental Protection Agency administrator, Scott Pruitt, who himself is a climate change denier; Pruitt forgot during his time at EPA that the agency’s mission is to “protect the environment,” not destroy it.
Climate change is real. It is endangering the planet we call home. It’s the only planet we have. Or, as someone noted just recently, there is “no planet B.”
The president takes an oath to protect Americans. The current president is far falling short of fulfilling that oath. The next one needs to step up.