Monday, October 10, 2011

Worst mistake US could make: Elect a president who does NOT believe in the Climate Change Crisis


Not all the citizens of the world are dismissive of the Climate Change Crisis. Figures vary about how many American believe that we are in the midst of a Climate Change Crisis but usually the number fall below 50%.

Americans' Global Warming Concerns Continue to Drop “Multiple indicators show less concern, more feelings that global warming is exaggerated. PRINCETON, NJ -- Gallup's annual update on Americans' attitudes toward the environment shows a public that over the last two years has become less worried about the threat of global warming, less convinced that its effects are already happening, and more likely to believe that scientists themselves are uncertain about its occurrence. In response to one key question, 48% of Americans now believe that the seriousness of global warming is generally exaggerated, up from 41% in 2009 and 31% in 1997, when Gallup first asked the question.” (March 11, 2010) Gallup.Com - Daily News, Polls, Public Opinion on Government, Politics, Economics, Management

However you see the figures there still is a sizable portion of US citizens who would consider putting in a President of the US who does not believe in the Climate Change Crisis. I don’t think they would get away with that in Europe:

Europeans fear climate change more than financial turmoil, poll shows “Respondents said climate change was the second most serious issue facing the world, after poverty. Europeans believe that dangers of climate change represent a more serious problem than the current financial turmoil, according to a new poll. The Eurobarometer poll (pdf) suggests that the majority of the public in the European Union consider global warming to be one of the world's most serious problems, with one-fifth saying it is the single most serious problem. Overall, respondents said climate change was the second most serious issue facing the world, after poverty.” (October 7, 2011) The Guardian

What is very troubling is that below most folks’ awareness on whether US citizens believe in Climate Change or not, their governments at the city and state levels are quietly (meaning mainstream media is oblivious to it) creating Climate Change Action Plans—but those plans could languish without strong support from a US President.

Many cities and states have been ramping up local efforts to deal with the many issues that Climate Change will cause—like energy, transportation, and public health issues. They have to because all governments are accountable to their constituents to protect them. Here’s what New York State is doing, for example:

“Executive Order No. 24 sets a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in New York State by 80 percent below the levels emitted in 1990 by the year 2050. The Executive Order also created the New York Climate Action Council (CAC) with a directive to prepare a Climate Action Plan.” New York Climate Change Advisory Group

But all these local efforts will be for in vain if we are crazy enough to put a leader in charge of our country who doesn’t even believe in science. These present efforts to address Climate Change by states and cities are a good start but they have to be done on a massive scale, quickly, and coordinated with other communities and countries in order to have any real effect on reversing an entire planet’s move towards warming up. This is not an opinion, this is physics. Installing a US President who would not take quick and decisive leadership on Climate Change is unthinkable as Climate Change accelerates.

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