The climate disaster we’ve been staring at for a long time is in the works.
Quietly, under the radar, funded by boatloads of money from rich Republican donors, environmental traitors have been working on a plan to not only end our efforts to battle climate change, but to speed up our inevitable day or reckoning, when all the fossil fuel profits in the world won’t be able to stop the melting icecaps, rising seas, severe storms, intense heat, and all that the blatant abdication of our responsibly to protect our plant brings down upon us.
In July, a post in this blog titled “Fascism is Knocking at the Door” outlined plans by Donald Trump’s conservative allies that the New York Times said aimed “to alter the balance of power by increasing the president’s authority over every part of the federal government that now operates … with any measure of independence from political interference by the White House.”
The Times reported that this effort is supported by “a well-funded network of conservative groups” and includes something called Project 2025 -- a $22-million operation that’s preparing policies, personnel lists, and transition plans to recommend to any Republican who ends up getting elected president in 2024.
You can read that post here.
Now, the Times reports on another goal of Project 2025 as “conservatives are laying the groundwork for a future Republican administration that would dismantle efforts to slow global warming. … The climate and energy provisions would be among the most severe swings away from current federal policies.”
This is not a fly-by-night scheme. This is a stunning, extensive, and diabolical strategy to undo efforts to date to combat climate change and ensure conditions can only get worse for future generations.
From increasing our use of fossil fuels, to crushing efforts to convert to green energy sources, to stripping the federal government of the ability to even address the issue of greenhouse gas emissions, this plan leads no stone unturned in the Right’s quest of enriching the fossil fuel industry while wreaking havoc on our planet in the process.
Before we look at the specifics, let’s be clear on something: The overwhelming majority of climate scientists around the world agree that humans’ burning of oil, gas, and coal since the Industrial Age has led to an increase of the average global temperature of 1.2 degrees Celsius or 2.2 degrees Fahrenheit.
Scientists have said that we must sharply and quickly reduce greenhouse gas emissions to avoid the most catastrophic impacts.
Instead, Republicans want to make things worse. Here’s how, according to the Time’s article:
Boosting the use of fossil fuels
*Shredding regulations to curb greenhouse gas pollution from cars, oil and gas wells, and power plants
*Calling for the government to stop trying to make automobiles more fuel efficient and to block states from adopting California’s stringent automobile pollution standards.
*Encouraging allied nations to buy and use more fossil fuels rather than renewable energy.
*Opening the door to drilling inside the pristine Arctic wilderness.
*Declaring the federal government has an “obligation to develop vast oil and gas and coal resources” on America’s public lands.
*Providing legal protection for energy companies that kill birds while extracting oil and gas.
*Classifying climate change as an issue no longer worthy of discussion by the National Security Council.
Stifling efforts to develop clean energy
*Dismantling almost every clean energy program in the federal government
*Repealing the Inflation Reduction Act, which was passed last year and is offering $370 billion for wind, solar, nuclear, green hydrogen, and electric vehicle technology. (Interestingly, most of the new investments are taking place in Republican-led states)
*Closing a Department of Energy office that has $400 billion in loan authority to help emerging green technologies, making it more difficult for solar, wind, and other renewable power – the fastest growing energy source in the United States – to be added to the grid.
The Kill Shot: Banning government regulation of greenhouse gas emissions
*Restarting efforts to reverse a 2009 scientific finding of the Environmental Protection Agency that says carbon dioxide emissions are a danger to public health. Conservatives have long believed that erasing that finding would “essentially strip the federal government of the right to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from most sources.”
You can read the Times article here.
So, there you have it, and it couldn’t be much clearer what we face if Republicans can amass the right combination of power in the White House and Congress.
And it couldn’t be much clearer that if you believe climate change is real and needs to be addressed then voting for a Republican is voting for the exact opposite to happen. Voting for enough Republicans ensures the incalculable damage to our planet their policies will bring.
Here’s a positive note to end on: By a nearly two-to-one margin, polls have found that Republicans aged 18 to 39 are more likely to agree that “human activity contributes a great deal to climate change,” and that the federal government has a role to play in curbing it.
Maybe younger Republicans can be the difference. Maybe the thought of exacerbating climate change instead of combating it, controlling women’s reproductive systems instead of leaving that in the hands of women themselves, and steamrolling the poor and middle class to the benefit of the rich will be so appalling that enough of them will either switch political affiliations or demand different policies from their party.
We can only hope. In the meantime, we must continue to fight and continue to educate on the clear and present danger the GOP presents to our democracy, our rule of law, and our planet.
Every day, they show us what they want to do and how they plan to do it.
How much more of a wakeup call do we need?
Thank you for reading my post. You can see more of my writing on my blog: Musings of a Nobody. Also, please check out my video blog: The 3:13 on Politics.