Hell is indeed freezing over and angels are dancing and popping corks everywhere. In an August 1st op-ed in the New York Times, former administrators of the Environmental Protection Agency William D. Ruckelshaus (1970 to 1973, 1983 to 1985), Lee M. Thomas (1985 to 1989), William K. Reilly (1989 to 1993), and Christine Todd Whitman (2001 to 2003) make the Republican Case for Climate Action.
First, they say denial is not a river in Egypt and it's time for Republicans to stop acting like stubborn 15-year olds clinging to their belief in Santa Claus.
There is no longer any credible scientific debate about the basic facts: our world continues to warm, with the last decade the hottest in modern records, and the deep ocean warming faster than the earth’s atmosphere. Sea level is rising. Arctic Sea ice is melting years faster than projected.They then go on to tout President Obama's Climate Action Plan, urging their Congress critters to endorse it and "start the overdue debate about what bigger steps are needed and how to achieve them — domestically and internationally."
More below the orange sluice of reality...
They talk about some of the important environmental policies that they pushed through in their days to clean up the air and the water (remember when Republicans did constructive things?), giving their Republican contemporaries some no-nonsense tutoring on how to be leaders and govern.
When confronted by a problem, deal with it. Look at the facts, cut through the extraneous, devise a workable solution and get it done.
They spell out for their fellow Republicans what the rest of the world and sane people in this country have known for quite some time now, basically borrowing Meteor Blades' delay is denial playbook.
We can have both a strong economy and a livable climate. All parties know that we need both. The rest of the discussion is either detail, which we can resolve, or purposeful delay, which we should not tolerate.
While you're at it, these high profile Republicans seem to say to their chickenhawk colleagues, don't just evolve a little bit towards being a timid non-denier, don't just get on board with the President's proposal, but help to work towards the much bolder actions and solutions that we need to implement to give us a chance to have some sort of a livable future on planet Earth.
Mr. Obama’s plan is just a start. More will be required. But we must continue efforts to reduce the climate-altering pollutants that threaten our planet. The only uncertainty about our warming world is how bad the changes will get, and how soon. What is most clear is that there is no time to waste.
PS: If you're in the Bay Area and want to do something, I just got this email from 350BayArea.org:
This week your voice and presence matter on the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline.
Wednesday, August 7, at 9:45 am
Bay Area Air Quality Management District Board vote on Keystone XL Pipeline Resolution.
Three things you can do
- Be there if you can this Wednesday. RSVP to attend the meeting
- Call Board Members on Monday and Tuesday - ask them to support the Resolution
- Sign 350 Bay Area's BayCAP Petition asking the Air District to declare that climate disruption is an escalating emergency and enact a program to achieve deep cuts in Bay Area greenhouse gas emissions. They have the power, but they're not using it. (Read more)
Make sure your your representative on the Air District Board votes to oppose the Keystone XL Pipeline.
Quick talking points:
Keystone will add up to 1.2 billion metric tons of carbon pollution to the atmosphere over the 50-year lifespan of the project.
According to EPA and State Department estimates, carbon emissions resulting from the burning of Alberta tar sands are 81 percent higher than those from conventional oil on a well-to-tank basis.
For more information, see 350 Bay Area's Tar Sands Mining and Keystone Pipeline Fact Sheet