Is Global Warming Causing Wild Weather?
July 10th, 2012
Climate deniers want to keep having this debate. It gives them the excuse to call for more studies, which is the most effective way in Washington to avoid solving a problem. It’s the same strategy deployed by cigarette makers as far back as 1946 in their ultimately failed attempt to fight scientists’ link between smoking and cancer.
As these dead-enders (to coin a phrase) trap us in what they hope will be an endless discussion over whether climate change is real, the rest of the world is moving to clean energy and energy efficiency. That’s creating a potentially $2.3 trillion global clean energy market that is driving innovation, reducing energy costs, and spurring manufacturing.
We have some of the solutions at our fingertips. With a few exceptions, cheaper, likely cleaner, natural gas is replacing coal across the United States. Electric vehicles that in many places will be charged with wind, solar, or nuclear-generated electricity, are rolling off assembly lines and into people’s driveways. The cost of solar and wind generation is plummeting. This is happening because of policies driven by Democrats like President Barack Obama and Republicans like former Governors Haley Barbour, and Arnold Schwarzenegger, Governor Rick Perry, and Senator Lamar Alexander. It’s happening because of huge investments in China, South Korea, and by capitalists like T. Boone Pickens, Bill Gates, and Elon Musk.
Continued investments by companies, capitalists, and governments will enable the U.S. to benefit from the clean energy economy while simultaneously fighting climate change. But we won’t accomplish this until the media, the climate community, and our elected representatives stop playing the obstructionists’ game of endlessly talking about the weather.
This piece was originally posted on National Journal.