Romney on Climate Change: “Spending trillions to reduce CO2 is not the right course”

Just so there’s no confusion, climate-world is upon us. This will be the last election where climate discussion can make a change, in my view. If we’re still dinking around in 2016, we’re dinking too late.

I’ve been very critical of Obama in this regard — I still expect him to approve the Keystone Sludge Pipe as soon as he’s safe-harbored from elections, and the man does like to drill. But I’d be remiss in not focusing on Romney-Ryan as well. Mr. Job Creator (and his Boy Robin) will surely deliver the unkindest cuts of all — the opposite of cuts to carbon production; full speed ahead. I case you missed these as they went past, here’s a taste of Romney’s energy awareness and plan.

Boston Globe, 5/7/2004 (my emphasis everywhere; no link on this one):

“Rather than get caught up in debate, Romney said, his administration decided to move forward. ‘I’m not a scientist,’ he said. ‘I read one book over the summer that said, “gee, global warming is happening for reasons unrelated to human participation,” and other reports, far more, indicate, “no no, it’s very much driven by humans.” Well, I don’t know.’” [Boston Globe, 5/7/04]

Boston Globe, 10/28/2011:

“‘My view is that we don’t know what’s causing climate change on this planet,’ Romney said in the speech, a clip of which was posted by the liberal blog Think Progress. ‘And the idea of spending trillions and trillions of dollars to try to reduce CO2 emissions is not the right course for us.’”

Reuters 9/20/2012:

The Romney-Hamm Energy Plan “Doesn’t Mention Climate Change Or Include Steps For Reducing U.S. Oil Consumption.”

The agenda doesn’t mention climate change or include steps for reducing U.S. oil consumption.

K. Kaufmann in the Palm Springs Desert Sun, 9/2/12 (archived article):

Romney’s Energy Plan Focuses On Mining And Fossil Fuels Without Mentioning Climate Change Or Public Health Impact

“Then there’s the glaring absence of any mention of climate change or how much more carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases all that mining, transportation and fossil fuel-burning will cause, not to mention public health impact. Renewable energy and energy-efficiency also get short shrift from Romney. Any federal support would be limited to basic research — no incentives for solar, wind or other renewable businesses.”

Tom Zeller Jr in the HuffPost, 8/30/2012:

“The words ‘climate change’ and ‘global warming’ are nowhere to be found in the 21-page [Romney energy plan] document. The term ‘greenhouse gas’ appears just once, in a passage decrying the Obama administration’s efforts to curb noxious emissions from the nation’s coal-fired power plants.” [Tom Zeller Jr., Huffington Post, 8/30/12]


Climate via Shutterstock

Carbon, carbon, carbon, baby

Whatever you think of the Obama administration’s feeble nods in this direction (and yes, aggressive drilling), do not doubt the RomneyRyan plan — “Carbon, carbon, carbon, baby; all you can eat, drink or breathe.”

Noam Chomsky once said that if you replace the word “jobs”‘  with the word “profits” in right-wing speech, the words are exactly right. So yes, these are your “profit creators” in all their nakedness.

Why does this matter? Click to see my personal climate model. As noted above, my current estimate says that if climate is discussed at the presidential level in 2016, it will be for show. If we’re still deciding by then, it’s over. We need that climate discussion now.

So here’s a start from your humble correspondent. Mother nature seems to be doing her part as well. (That it has come to that is tragic.)


To follow or send links: @Gaius_Publius

Gaius Publius is a professional writer living on the West Coast of the United States.

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