This week’s must read, from the Christian Science Monitor, penned by our own Bob Inglis: Nixon went to China. Can Trump do climate change?
This week’s must watch: the latest Global Weirding from Katharine Hayhoe.
This week in climate change news, first, in the spirit of the positive:
Two in three Americans, including 49 percent of Republicans, would favor a revenue neutral carbon tax as a means of mitigating carbon dioxide emissions. The Yale Program on Climate Change Communication and George Mason University’s Center for Climate Change Communication conducted the survey, which showed voters are more progressive than national political party platforms. American attitudes on the need to address climate change are creeping back up to 2007 levels after support tanked in 2010. Conservatives have seen the biggest turn around on the issue, with 19 percent more acknowledging climate change today than in 2010.
In an interview with Observer, former New York governor and one-time presidential candidate George Pataki said, “Intelligent people, from Republicans to Democrats, conservatives and liberals, can sit down and discuss the facts on a science basisnot reject the concerns of those who have doubts about the impact of human action and the overall contribution of greenhouse gases to global warmingand look to put in place consensus policies that empower American technology and innovation.” Pataki has been a long-time supporter of a national policy on greenhouse gas reductions. “If Republicans and Democrats work together, we can see a continued dramatic reduction in greenhouse gases, and at the same time, an expansion of opportunity for the people of America.”
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker took the next step in the state’s efforts to meet emissions targets by issuing proposed reductions from the natural gas, transportation and electricity generation industries. The Global Warming Solutions Act requires the state to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent below 1990 emissions levels by 2020. As of 2013, the state had reduced emissions by nearly 20 percent. The package of new regulations aims to achieve an additional seven percent reduction by 2020. “With these proposed regulations, the Commonwealth is ensuring that we both meet the rigorous emission reductions limits established in the Global Warming Solutions Act and continue to protect public health and safety, infrastructure, communities, small businesses, and our state’s abundant natural resources from the effects of climate change,” Baker said in a statement. There will be a set of public hearings and a public comment period with the final targets expected in August 2017.
And then in the news of the absurd:
Former Sen. Rick Santorum, who challenged President-elect Donald Trump for the nomination earlier this year, expressed concern for the climate position of Rex Tillerson, Trump’s pick to serve as Secretary of State. Santorum called the pick “unorthodox” and indicated he’s looking for clarity on Tillerson’s positions. “Well, Exxon has been let’s just say, involved in the climate change discussion, accepting the alarmist view of climate change, and suggesting things like carbon taxes and the like,” he said. “There are some concerns I have about some of the positions he’s taken on issues like climate change.”
And that’s a wrap on 2016. Happiest holiday wishes from ClimateEye. Stay tuned next week for our Year in Review.