Both men have, in fact, indicated on a number of occasions that they not only think climate change is happening, but also that something should be done about it. Heresy! Lisa Demer reports that Sullivan said in a 2008 speech that “our energy challenges and climate change challenges stem primarily from a common source—an overreliance on hydrocarbons as the world’s primary form of energy.”
But in an email to Demer last week, Sullivan retreated:
Alaska is on the front lines when it comes to changes in our climate, and with seven billion people on earth, humans will have an effect. However, despite what many climate change alarmists want us to believe, there is no general consensus on pinpointing the sole cause of global temperature trends.
Treadwell, who once headed the Arctic Research Commission, testified at a Senate committee hearing in 2008:
[W]e understand it is this nation’s goal—expressed with other nations—to reverse the trend of climate change caused by humans. In the Arctic, research to support adaptation to and mitigation of climate change is high on our agenda. But as more forces than climate are working to produce an accessible Arctic, it is essential that our nation act now.
But now he's saying:
“Since where most of us live in Alaska was once covered by ice, I’m pretty sure humans didn’t cause it all,” Treadwell wrote in an emailed response. “Whether or not we caused some of it is a discussion that has taken years, and will take more. In the meantime, Alaskans are working to adapt.”
As Digby points out, such statements don't go nearly far enough for Sullivan or Treadwell to beat Miller in the contest to become chief of the loons on climate change denial. Purists aren't going to vote for mumblers.
It shouldn't be hard for Alaskans to figure out just how loony the outright denial and the hemming and hawing actually are. After all, they're on the front lines of climate change as noted here, here, here, here and here.
It would be encouraging to discover that, whoever wins the Republican primary, come the morning of Nov. 5, rank-and-file Alaskans will have proved that they can see what's happening all around them even if Joe Miller can't or has reasons to pretend he can't.
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