Ecocentric

Why Climate Change Has Become the Missing Issue in the Presidential Campaign

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Scott Olson / Getty Images

A demonstrator yells at spectators and police during a protest in front of the Duke Energy Center during the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., Sept. 5, 2012.

We’re in the final few months of what’s shaping up to be the hottest year on record. In September, Arctic sea ice melted to its smallest extent in satellite records, while the Midwest was rocked by a once-in-a-generation level drought. Global carbon dioxide emissions hit a record high in 2011 of 34.83 billion tons, and they will almost certainly be higher this year. Despite that fact, the more than two decade-old international effort to deal with climate change has hit a wall, and the upcoming U.N. global warming summit in the Qatari capital of Doha — whose residents have among the highest per-capita carbon emissions in the world — is unlikely to change that hard fact.

Given all that, it might seem reasonable to think that climate change —a nd how the U.S. should respond to it — would be among the top issues of the 2012 presidential election. We are, after all, talking about a problem that has the potential to alter the fate of the entire planet, one that requires solutions that utterly alter our multi-trillion dollar energy system. Climate change has been a subject at the Presidential or Vice-Presidential debates since 1988, as Brad Johnson, who surveys environmental coverage for ThinkProgress, pointed out this week. Yet through all of the 2012 debates, not a single question was asked about climate change, and on the stump, neither candidate has had much to say about the issue — with Mitt Romney more often using global warming as a punchline, and President Obama mentioning it in passing, at most.

That’s not to say that the root cause of climate change — energy use — has been ignored. Romney and Obama have sparred over fossil fuel production in the U.S., with each candidate trying to position himself as the bigger booster of domestic oil or natural gas. The shale oil and gas boom in the U.S. is real, and it will be enormously important to the economy and to energy prices in the years to come. But neither Romney nor Obama seem to want to acknowledge the negative environmental effects of producing and consuming more and more oil and natural gas. As Slate’s Will Oremus wrote last week:

It started off with an audience member asking Obama whether he agreed with his energy secretary, Steven Chu, that lowering gas prices isn’t his department’s goal. That sparked an increasingly heated exchange in which both candidates vehemently asserted their fossil-fuel bona fides, without ever mentioning that there might be a downside to reinforcing the country’s dependence on oil, gas, and coal. In fact, when Romney accused Obama of not being “Mr. Oil or Mr. Gas or Mr. Coal,” the president defended his record of opening public lands for oil drilling and fired back that Romney was no great friend of coal either. And when he criticized Romney for dismissing wind power, he neglected to offer any reason why alternative energy might be a good thing, other than creating some jobs in Iowa. Romney, for his part, allowed that he “appreciates wind jobs in Iowa,” before returning to his unwavering support for the holy trinity of oil, gas, and coal.

Environmental groups are so frustrated by the disappearance of climate change as a campaign issue that they recently launched a website, ClimateSilence.org, that argues Romney and Obama have toned down their statements on global warming in a “collective descent toward mute acceptance of global calamity.” Translation: climate change is getting worse all the time, but our Presidential candidates can’t seem to be bothered to debate about it.

It’s not surprising that Romney would avoid talking about climate change. Though he pushed Massachusetts to join other Northeastern states in a regional pact to reduce greenhouse gases early in his term as governor, in the years since, the Republican party has moved almost lockstep into climate denialism — and Romney has proven that he is adept at shifting his beliefs when it’s politically expedient. It’s still noteworthy though that even as Romney has made moves toward the center over the past month in a successful effort to close the gap with Obama — soft-pedaling his opposition to abortion, insisting he won’t cut taxes on the wealthy — he’s made no effort to cite climate change as evidence of his moderate temperament. It’s as if the Republican campaign has concluded that Americans simply don’t care enough about global warming — not now, with the economy foremost on everyone’s mind — to bother even pretending that a Romney victory would be good for the environment.

The Obama campaign can point to specific policy initiatives that help combat global warming — including significant improvements in auto fuel efficiency, billions of dollars in investment in clean energy technologies and new regulations that will curb coal pollution. And it’s true that Obama does specifically mention climate change in public statements, as a memo put out yesterday by energy and environmental officials advising the campaign underscored. There’s no doubt that of the two candidates, only President Obama has anything like a plan to deal with climate change, and that global warming is one of the issues about which Romney and Obama are furthest apart.

But it’s still notable that in the debates, Obama hasn’t brought up global warming on his own, even at moments when it would have helped explain some of his actions over the past four years. In the second debate, for example, after a questioner asked him about what his Administration was doing to about high gas prices, Obama managed to talk about energy for minutes without mentioning the need to eventually reduce carbon emissions, beyond a paean to energy efficiency. When the Keystone XL pipeline came up, Obama didn’t talk about the effect that increased U.S. dependence on Canadian oil sands might have on global carbon emissions. Once again, climate change was missing in action.

In the end, though, it’s difficult to blame either candidate for dropping climate talk in this election. Beyond committed environmentalists, there hasn’t been much evidence that Americans even want to think about global warming, much less vote on it. But the job of a leader — or someone who is applying to become a leader — should involve telling the occasional difficult, even inconvenient truth. That’s been missing in this campaign.

96 comments
LandonLewis
LandonLewis

The energy of our environment is affected by the perception we infer when tolerating ignorant people, and although this may not come as a shock, it is existentially dependent on our reception to gay rights 'activism' on a global basis. I use the term 'activism' because I know that legalizing gay marriage will simply not be enough in this day and age to induce a balance in the PH of the earth's aura of anti-materialistic energy. It appears paradoxical in nature because of the way many Americans still perceive their own environments due to unrecognizable PTSD from the media coverage by 'WOLFGANG' on 9/11. The architectural progression of 9/11 instills an uneasiness in my perception of reality because of the original North Tower and South Tower designs. Ideally, they both could have been reconstructed and the capitalistic society of the United States could progress freely without chaos on the horizon, but instead, One World Trade Center, which stands at 1,776 feet atop the 'broadcasting spire', achieved a philosophical anomaly within my mind that allowed me to rationalize the transitive characteristics of bipolar disorder, in other words, an evolution capable within all humans. In a recent panic attack, I began to convulse over reoccurring memories of the towers collapsing, as I was just a small child who was glued to the television out of genuine curiosity towards what was happening in my country. I was introduced to the term Bi-Polar during a 5-day detainment in a psychiatric ward in Columbus, Ohio where I was incorrectly diagnosed with manic depression and schizophrenia. After my stay I was arranged to meet with a Therapist who's daughter was diagnosed with Schizo-Affective disorder as well. This disorder, which allows me to spontaneously see aura's around particular human beings, gave me pursuit of knowledge into cosmic energy studies and I was prescribed Depakote to combat my 'issues'. He apologized for the misdiagnoses but informed me that the study of mental illnesses was ever-changing and I was curious as to how that could particularly be. I was 'radicalized' by this prescription's 'affects' in what I have come to understand as a time lapse phasic vortex in between the realm of a transition between two alternative universes. That being said, mass psychological examinations need to be administered as quickly as possible on all innately 'heterosexual' human beings, not simply due to their felonious behavior but because of their inept and uninvolved detours into self-discovery. When a human being cannot recognize itself comfortably, in my instance due to the environments reciprocated affection on my mental stability, it creates a distorted frequency of energy that does not allow the natural currents of the earths anti-materialistic energy to circulate in a stabilizing manner. If two geniuses were to play a game of chess, one would win, the other would learn a new strategy. An intellectual's mind is something very fragile when imbalanced, thus we need to move forward in all realms of holistic medicines, organic food distributions, and remove all perceptions of 'addiction' from our minds. LSD administered in critically strategic doses will alleviate the memories of those with traumatic brain injuries, and I know this because I have found my generational soulmate through this process. 'Frank Ocean'. The American Dream is not necessarily ending, we are simply evolving regressively into our ancient civilization of technologically sound, beautiful creatures. World Peace is happening, and if we don't make the change, our planet will not survive another 20 years.
NGC 1277, the birth of a stable black hole engulfing an entire galaxy.
There are 9 phases of Dimensional Travel.

craigbhill
craigbhill

Energy independence is a joke on the people who believe it.  Know where a lot of Alaskan crude goes?  It's sold and shipped to Japan.  You know where the oil coursing thru the pipeline that will detour around Nebraska's Sand Hills will wind up?  In Louisiana, where it is to be shipped abroad.

There is no attempt at "Energy Independence".  The government is run by profiteers who go for the highest dollar.  If that means every drop of natural resources goes everywhere but the US, that's where it will go.  The government, in turn, protects their profiteering masters, who funded them into office so they could, by foisting the absurd flag-waving lie of energy independence on the public, which is constantly duped by frauds of both parties.

You may as well believe in Santa as Uncle Sam.  At least Santa doesn't lie to your face.  He, too, tho, is as real as the two-party system, both ends of which employ the same lies to every other act of patriotism they present to the public.

Death to both parties.  America can then breathe free, of them.

ancientWisdom3
ancientWisdom3

Energy independence is a pipe dream. We in the US consume 25 percent of the world's oil but only own 3 percent. Worse. the GOP/Big Oil/Bush energy policy is to reduce imports by burning up our own oil first. This isn't rocket science; it's first-grade arithmetic: having less left means needing more. Renewables and more automobile efficiency are necessary but not sufficient conditions for survival.  Auto fuel efficiency has been improved several times with the same result: Give people more miles per gallon and you get more vehicle miles traveled. We can never kick the oil habit unless we kick the automobile habit. Automobiles are the least energy efficient travel mode and the mode getting the biggest subsidies. Rail is our most energy-efficient mode, in Btu per passenger-mile, KW per passenger-mile, or passenger-miles per gallon of fuel. Highways generate sprawl, adding distance to every trip, causing us to burn more oil. China is beating the pants off us in green energy/green jobs, and has a world-class passenger rail network like we once had, but for the last 80 years the highway lobby has done a dandy job of preventing trains from ever competing with cars, so we now have a third-world transportation system. Oil is killing us; we are blowing up our mountains for coal (more then 500 mountains so far in the Appalachians) and destroying watersheds.  Meanwhile,  global oil production peaked in 2006, and tar sands oil is the dirtiest of all, and we keep having to consume more energy to get the fossil fuel. I'm all for  Obama but not an all-of-the-above energy policy; that's like treating alcohol addiction with twelve steps plus an extra 8 ounces of whiskey every day. Sadly, people will not listen to what they don't want to hear.

Lionel Gambill, Beijing

ChrisThomasWakefield
ChrisThomasWakefield

The true reasons for Climate Change are not what is being reported by the news media, does this surprise you? If so, do a double-take of your attitudes towards those who report news and those who are associated with scientific output, you are being duped. While those, who are many wish to accept anything that established science says, it still remains that many issues are unresolved and downright paradoxical when you consider the evidence. Wake up! The scientific community does not have your best interests at heart! Those who report in the field are most definitely motived to help humanity and Earth, but they are hamstrung by those who manipulate data to fit their needs: the scientific management. Now these people are essentially good people, but are controlled to the point where only the most bland of data makes it to the public eye, this makes what is reported to be a reduction of truth, in other words: a lie.What we are told is "Climate Change" is really something entirely different, but this fact is not public knowledge. The fact is that Earth is wobbling in a figure eight motion due to a combination of our daily rotational exposure of the magnetic North Pole to the face of the Sun. Now the Sun is in balance with the solar system, but what is in front of the Sun (between Earth and the Sun) is what is causing our wobble: Planet X or Nibiru. Now this is a big subject to those new to it, but suffice it to say that a very large interruption to the life of all those living on Earth at this time comes.The presidential election did not include talk about Climate Change is because Obama and Romney already know about the approaching planet called Planet X and did not want to complicate their possible election by broaching the subject.For discussion of Planet X and the Earth poleshift, visit or join our Facebook group for more information:

http://www.facebook.com/groups/survivingthepoleshift/

Jeff
Jeff

There has got to be some breakthrough technology that can reverse climate change and supply our energy needs.  Take for instance, a recent discovery that some form bacteria found in chicken waste generates ethanol.  If this bacterium can be bio-engineered to consume light, water, methane, and carbon dioxide as its primary sources of energy and its biological structure, with the waste product being ethanol, we will have resolved our energy needs (On a large scale basis), provided budding graduates of science and engineering a large number of jobs, and the best part, reduce the concentration of methane gas and carbon dioxide found in the atmosphere in an energetically favorable way (~10 units of energy out for 1 unit input).

Bacteria is also much more efficient with its internal processes than a large scale organism.

Simply put, if we invest the research expenditures to determine the genetic code needed along with other biological cellular, with conversion to E-85 vehicles, we could reduce a gallon of gas expenditure to 2$ again.

However, the scale of this project would likely be that of in between a cooperative research project shared between many large universities and the Manhatten project, and securing funding during a recessionary environment, or god-forbid, a Romney adminstration, would be next to impossible for this.

JohnWerneken
JohnWerneken

The inconvenient truth is that at the moment economic progress for most is more important to most than future costs for many, particularly if the first of the many are other people. An approach which IGNORES a concern for the global aspects might well succeed. So many huge changes might benefit almost everyone almost everywhere, and incidentally provide more of what energy is needed for, plus more energy, and less carbon and less climate change. This stuff can't be sold as worth doing for climate-only reasons though. It has been tried and the issue has indeed been taken totally off the agenda in response.

visualcarbon
visualcarbon

Good article, thanks. My view is that the silence reflects the reality that climate change has become a serious threat to big fossil interests. In past years, climate change was something out there in the future. Now it is becoming clear that it is causing real damages now and that many effects are happening quicker than expected. Studies are starting to show how a lack of a carbon price is hurting economies by causing them to invest in capital that will be stranded and by making it hard for those economies to develop cleaner alternatives that will be central in the future economy. Carbon pricing is coming as even the head of Duke Energy recently admitted. Now just look at EIA modelling on what happens to USA coal burning with even a modest carbon price! When USA adopts a carbon price equal to what BC has now ($30/tCO2) then about half of USA coal burning becomes noncompetitive. Coal in USA can't survive even modest carbon pricing. There will be other big winners instead...but coal has the dollars now to protect their interests in elections in states like, say, Ohio. That explains the silence. But silence can be deadly if it hides risk. Coal economies in USA are finding out that you can't hide from such risk.

Kopernicus1967
Kopernicus1967

You forgot to mention the Antarctic ice is at the largest in recorded history as well as the fact that for 15 years there has been no net increase in global temperatures.

In the 1970s the same climate people were 100% convinced we were headed for an ice age.  The blizzards of 77 and 79 were used as "told you so" propaganda then.  Now the global warmists have the internet to inflate and exaggerate what may well be natural fluctuations in climate.

wmanos1213
wmanos1213

Just because it's inconvenient doesn't mean its true.

OmayaFetouri
OmayaFetouri

@TIME Like they even care about nature. Lolz.

craigbhill
craigbhill

COME ON, Time.  These two liars have not brought up global warming because they are in the deep pockets of dirty 20th century energy profits.  Not dissimilarly from Time Inc.  All three should be hated by future generations suffering from what will prove to be torturous neglect.   

Martian_14
Martian_14

The reason is simple:  Obama and Romney are politicians, and as such are big, fat coward liars....They do not want get involved with anything controversial... 

It is easier and safer to talk about, for instance, gay marriage than global warming, because global warming involves the economy, whereas, for instance, gay marriage, involves a minority of voters

Hadrewsky
Hadrewsky

Idiots need to understand current generation nuclear plants can be made to have zero risk of meltdown ( yes zero even if hit with an earthquake).... Molten sodium and other generation IV and V reactors are so safe id build a preschool near one without much concern.

The public is too stupid to consider the nuclear option and that is a damn shame.

umakantmaurya
umakantmaurya

@dibang Climate of whole politics is on verge of changing... I hope so... n u asking about climate change.

TALKS_abhi
TALKS_abhi

@TIME climate never has been stable people fear of speaking some thing outdated with every change happening so fast. u never knw bfr u knw

PankajMahajan
PankajMahajan

@TIME @algore it's not a high concern for both candidates & will not help them climb the popularity charts to get votes #ClimateReality

kwilcottharris
kwilcottharris

@TIME Is that what's making it hot in the Winter and cold in the Spring? Do we need to change the season months?? :/

GinaMarie_x0
GinaMarie_x0

@TIME Because in some weird way "THEY" ARE THE CAUSE OF IT!

JohnRussell40
JohnRussell40

.@cwhope @matjhope @TIME Agreed. But in their heads they're not in 'leader' mode; they're trying to score max points to win #election game.

LegalBagel
LegalBagel

"Green energy" is a tough sell because most of it is not economically viable (especially wind).  Additionally, many "green" energy alternatives are not environmentally friendly, according to other standards.  Is killing birds on a large scale with wind turbines desirable?  Are the toxic chemicals used in batteries for hybrid cars a good thing?  Is filling whole valleys in the Mojave Desert with solar panels going to help keep desert ecosystems vibrant and healthy?   Please note that wind and solar are too intermittent to be viable on a large scale (beyond 15 or 20% of total power grid sources, at least with any current or foreseeable technology).  What are we to do?  If stopping greenhouse gases is really necessary to save the planet, then we need to stop cutting down trees, building buildings, growing food or living.....  Of course, that is a bit extreme.  If we want to have a viable power grid and virtually no greenhouse emissions, then we should focus on nuclear power -- but nuclear is scary to many people.  So, what's the answer? Government subsidies when national debt is a big issue?  Shoving more expensive energy down consumers' throats when their income is falling?  As Bill Clinton has pointed out, the only way green energy will work is if consumers (aka voters) see it as being not only a cleaner choice but one that will make their personal lives better.  Even he doesn't have a solid idea that would solve the problem.

JSalsa740
JSalsa740

@susantorres35 @TIME Uh, because climate change isn't real. And if it is, it's because we're all sinners and deserve it. #DUH

michael83917
michael83917

Also pay attention also to what is not said - while both candidates havetried to sound very pro energy production, Romney spent time during thedebates talking about his support for coal - President Obama did not.

michael83917
michael83917

Its called political capital, and there isn't enough of it. For there to be any action on climate change we'd need to deliver both houses of congress and the presidency to the democrats, and this is unlikely to happen.  There is also the issue of the economy, which is the paramount issue this election in most people's eyes. You may not be happy this issue isn't getting the spotlight, but you're ignoring how politics works. The current administration put a lot of support behind various green energy projects, some of which blew up in their face.

JimBullis
JimBullis

Part II

I try to make the case that neither party is facing the fact that we are in decline as to agro-industrial production. So doing things that impact energy supplies is not a good approach. But the main problem is simply that a world economy is in force now and we do not play well on that field. So more than energy, we need to put what assetts we have to work to give us advantages that make up for our need to be well paid for our work.An assett which we do not use effectively is our large land area. Much of it is under-used due to lack of water for irrigation. A National Water Project could fix this problem. We also need to develop equipment that would enable farm work on the expanded farm area that this would enable. Hence, the Miastrada Dragon is under development as shown on youtube.Science dropped out of the picture after my first sentence. But that community strives to specify solutions that are impractical, thus making themselves irrelevant. I keep trying to remind people that real science is not a problem solving activity. They did their part in discovering the problem; now they need to move aside and let problem solvers take action.

JimBullis
JimBullis

Part I:Science is capable of discovering that CO2 is steadily increasing and that this has a heat trapping effect. The history of the Industrial Revolution, including the efforts of most people around the world to improve the basic quality of life, can easily be seen as a significant part of the CO2 generation that is beyond that of natural events. We also should take notice that China is commissioning 4 coal fired power plants each week, according to the Time article by Fareed Zakaria. I take this as a hint that people put priority on solving immediate problems relating to their life style rather than future conditions predicted by science.This kind of thinking seems to be in control in the USA, where the biggest concern is jobs. So, ordinary folk are capable of discovering that there is a serious economic problem, though the workings of the economy are very unclear to almost everyone.Government policy is clearly stymied, with the dismaying fact that mass stimulus has not fixed the problem, though it seems likely that the massive stimulus has prevented much worse. Spending cuts and tax cuts might have an effect, but the burden of these does not seem fairly positioned, and it certainly does not seem likely that moving cash to the wealthy will cause commerce to fluorish. This is where public attention is focused now.

Plantiful
Plantiful

If we are to address humanity's detrimental effects on the global climate, we ourselves will have to take actions into our own control:  don't wait for the U.S. government to do anything to address this issue.  It has been bought by the fossil fuel industry (think Exxon Mobil, Peabody Coal, British Petroleum, etc...) to not do anything, since making any positive policies will hurt their precious profits.  They have paid billions into campaign "contributions," misleading advertising ("Clean Coal"), and other projects to prevent anything from happening, and it's working well for them.

We have to do this ourselves:  all of us who uses energy, and here are ways to do it:

1) Clothes:  use cold water detergents and cold water when possible (little energy needed for cold water); (almost free)

2) Clothes drying:  use a clothes line (the sun can dry clothes without burning coal and without destroying your clothes); (free)

3) Get a solar hot water heater for your home or ask your apartment / condo association to install one:  essentially carbonless hot water from April to October in New England.  Just imagine what it can do in the South and MidWest!  ($2500-3000)

4) Change your lights from incandescents to CFL (save 50%) or LED (save 75%).  They are expensive, but they use far less energy and will last much longer. ($5-20 / bulb)

5) If your area is of a suitable size, use manual landscaping tools:  reel mower, rake, broom: quieter, no maintenance, great way to get outside for exercise.  Fun for the family too. (free once equipment is bought)

6) Buying a new stove?  Buy an induction stove for use with steel pots and pans.  Very efficient and fast.

7) If you have a woodstove- use it.  There are Biobricks, Envilogs which are pressed sawdust and burn like wood- cheap, clean, easy to handle.  You can dry your laundry next to it for humidification and dry clothes-- all renewable.

8) Buy locally produced food:  importing foods from New Zealand and South America is unneeded, senseless, and very dependent on fossil fuels.  Want a peach?  Wait until June, and enjoy the fresh apples today.

9) Use public transport, or use an efficient automobile:  hybrids get 45-60 mpg, electric cars use only about $40-50 / month with no maintenance (they are expensive, but they can be leased).  Gasoline savings will pay for most of the lease on a Nissan Leaf.

10) Compost your vegetable wastes:  composting produces carbon dioxide, which is 20-times less destructive ("warming") than methane, which is what is produced when garbage is buried in a landfill.

11) Recycle- recycled materials use far less energy than new materials. 

12) Turn off anything on 'standby' mode and unplug anything with a transformer- they are using energy even though they are "off".  Use plug strips with a switch.

13) For air conditioning, if needed, open windows at night and blow hot air out of the house from upper floors, if available.  Close windows and curtains during the day. Plant leafy trees around the house for shading.

We live doing nearly all of these, and our electric bill is 200-400 kWh/month or $20-40 /month  + $40 for the car, we know what our heating costs will be (wood), an we throw away about 4 small grocery bags of trash away each week.  We burn about 80 gallons of oil / year for hot water.

If everyone started to use the technologies that we already have, then we could all collectively reduce carbon emissions, and save money at the same time.

kate
kate

I believe anthropogenic climate change to be the greatest moral crisis in human history, most especially the 51% attributable to the animal-based diets of affluent countries.  We are causing extinctions of so many species, destruction of the rain forests, primarily to grow food for the animals in the factory farm system.  The ocean is dying because of us.  The animals in the factory farm system suffer extreme cruelty.  And all this for animal protein that, with up to 99%+ statistical likelihood, has been shown in research and clinical studies by many of the world's leading scientists and physicians to be correlated to gruesome diseases - cancer, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, autoimmune disorders, dementia, etc.  We are approaching a tipping point where the catastrophes will become simply horrific.  There is something each one of us can do:  choose a plant based diet of whole grains, legumes, nuts, fresh vegetables and fruit.  Today, every day.  

AriAsulin
AriAsulin

I'm sure you're well aware of this before you wrote the article; you sound like a smart guybut I'm going to have to put it to you again:If Obama talks about Climate Change in these debates, then the people will elect Romney.At some point you have to acknowledge the state of affairs in this country. The people don't care.If YOU care, then you'd do well to mention Obama's vast accomplishments re climate change despite total opposition in the House on every single step.By ignoring this truth, you do nothing to further the venue of people like Obama who are the only ones doing anything about this problem.It's your choice.

kate
kate

I believe thatanthropogenic climate change is the most serious moral crisis in all human history.  51% of it is now caused by the factory farm system, especially by the United States and other countries that consume animal protein.  Extinctions, the ocean dying, the tremendous suffering of the factory farm animals, the destruction of the rain forests, all for food that scientists and doctors have successfully documented as correlated to cancer, heart disease, dementia, osteoporosis, autoimmune disorders, more.  We are near the tipping point.  There is so much each one of us can do for ourselves, for animals, for the planet:  eat a healthy whole grains/legumes/nuts/fresh fruit and vegetable diet.  Now.  Kate

Yoshi
Yoshi

The climate will change. It has been changing for eons and will not be held in some configuration to our liking. To think we can stop this change, whether mannade or not is laughable. Learn to adapt or perish. Nothing new here. "Buy a Prius or die" doesn't cut it. The earth isn't going anywhere. WE will. Enjoy it while it lasts......

oldsaltysailor
oldsaltysailor

I agree climate change is the number one security threat to the world and the military is well aware of the brush fires that will need to be extinguished as food and water resources become scarce. In spite of the well documented science there is a sinister quiet among the media, military, and politicians over climate change. The immensely powerful fossil fuel companies have kept the damper on this conversation for many years. After all they are sitting on several trillion dollars worth of fossil fuels throughout the world. My view is they had rather keep this issue muted and unsettled than lose all of that dough. Is it any wonder that climate change has been a wedge issue.  Ever wonder why the T-party and right wing hate radio denounce the issue? The wealthy will always have an escape plan to safer environments but the rest of us will suffer the consequences.

tom.litton
tom.litton

I think it's already too late to limit carbon emissions; if not from a scientific perspective, then from a social perspective.  We need to focus on inventing ways of taking the carbon out of the atmosphere.