Saturday, October 22, 2016

Climate To The Left of Me? Climate To The Right.

Hillary Clinton
Climate change is not caused by capitalism. Climate change is not caused by political corruption. Climate change is not caused by plutocracy.  

Climate change is caused by rising greenhouse gas emissions.

Anyone and everyone that remotely claims to understand or "believe in" climate change, needs to accept that we must cut emissions.

And, anyone that claims to understand climate change must also accept that we are out of time.  We must get to zero emissions by 2050 just to have a moderate chance of staying under 2C, by even the most optimistic projections.  That means building the infrastructure we need to get to zero today.  In our current system.  

We don't have time to remake our political system first. We don't have time to end political corruption first. We don't have time to solve class, LGBT, gender or racial injustice first.

No.  We don't have time.

If we care about the poor, if we care about women, children, the LGBT community, or minorities, if we care about our government, if we care about our children, if we care about animals and plants, if we care about anything that we have in our lives, we must place the utmost emphasis on cutting emissions.  Every single thing we know or love is jeopardized by climate change. 

We are out of time. And we MUST end carbon emissions. NOW.

As climate solutions go, I prefer the revenue neutral carbon fee and dividend. But a cap and trade can work. A carbon tax swap can work. A revenue raising carbon tax can work. Subsidies for renewables and ancillary infrastructure can work. Nuclear can work. Local, state and federal regulations can work. Private corporate investment can work. Public-private partnerships can work.  Religious edicts can work.  

I will take any and all of the above.

And anyone that claims to understand climate change will too. 

Michael Brune
Michael Brune and the Sierra Club, along with other environmental groups that opposed a carbon tax in Washington, have just demonstrated that they don't understand that.  (Brune cited that the carbon tax wasn't strong enough for various constituents in Washington with whom the left is allied, despite the fact that it includes a payment up to $1500/year for the poor).

People unwilling to vote for Hillary Clinton, who has strong plans for renewables and efficiency, the grid, storage, and load-shifting necessary to renewables, as well as for incentives for states to cut emissions, have demonstrated that they don't understand that.

Yes, we need plans to keep it in the ground.  A price on carbon is accepted as one of the best ways to do that.  And, yes, Hillary Clinton has been generally mum on a price on carbon because she does not see it as politically viable. 
(This is the statement from her campaign back in July:  "'Sec. Clinton would welcome working with Congress to address this issue but she also believes it is too important to wait for climate deniers to listen to science,' Trevor Houser, a Clinton campaign energy policy adviser said... 'That's why she is focused on a plan she can implement from Day 1.'")
Apparently, like most of us, she assumed it wasn't politically viable because of science denial in the GOP. 

One could guess that the left also might block a carbon price if it failed to raise revenue and spend money on renewables.  But no one would have guessed that it wouldn't just be the left, it would be the environmental left blocking a carbon tax. That is shocking. 

Think about that for a moment.  

The leaders in our country on climate...the people who are supposed to know most clearly that we are in dire straits...the people who should know that we must put cutting carbon above all else in order to protect all that we love...they don't get it.  

If the left doesn't get it?  That leaves the center and the right.  And you know what?  I predict that the center and the right will take ownership of cutting carbon before the left ever figures out how to stop squabbling. And the left will be stunned when they've lost on this issue. 

Carlos Curbelo
Bob Inglis
People like Bob Inglis  (former Representative and founder of the Republican carbon tax advocacy group RepublicEn) and Carlos Curbelo (Republican representative and co-founder of the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus) are waiting in the wings for that day.  

And you know who else may be predicting the same thing?  Hillary Clinton, who thinks that same none-of-the-above-energy crowd should "get a life." 

(Her leaked comments:  “They come to my rallies and they yell at me and, you know, all the rest of it. They say, ‘Will you promise never to take any fossil fuels out of the earth ever again?’ No. I won’t promise that. Get a life.
Clinton continued: “I’m having conversations in these town halls and these meetings I’m having with a lot of people who break into my meetings, they hold up posters, they scream at me, and all the rest of that: ‘Stop extracting fossil fuels, stop extracting on public lands, come out against nuclear, coal’ you name it.") 

No coal, no oil, no gas, no nuclear...that is not reasonable if you want to lead 320M people who have homes to heat unless you build renewables and infrastructure to support renewables first.  People wonder why she doesn't support a carbon tax. Well, hell, the environmentalists on the left can't even seem to get it together to do that. 

So what is she doing?  She is looking to address climate while speaking the right's language--becoming the clean energy superpower of the world. And not only that, she is doing it with the support and advice of people with a whole lot of experience dealing with climate and energy (Al Gore, John Podesta, Jennifer Granholm, just to name a few).
"Climate change is an urgent threat and a defining challenge of our time. It threatens our economy, our national security, and our children’s health and futures. We can tackle it by making America the world’s clean energy superpower and creating millions of good-paying jobs, taking bold steps to slash carbon pollution at home and around the world, and ensuring no Americans are left out or left behind as we rapidly build a clean energy economy."

Well, someone's got to speak about climate in language the right understands.  The left sure isn't. 

And it looks like that someone is Hillary Clinton.

And you know what?  I am with her.

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