This week in climate change, while Donald Trump dominated the GOP delegate news, Ohio Gov. John Kasich led the climate news cycle.
As the other candidates canvased South Carolina in advance of that state’s primary on Tuesday, Kasich campaigned in New England, where he held a town hall in the state of Vermont. Challenged by a scientist to offer his position on the science of climate change, Kasich responded: “I know that human beings affect the climate. I know it’s an apostasy in the Republican Party to say that.”
“I guess that’s what I’ve always been,” Kasich added. “[Someone] able to challenge some of the status quo.” Kasich went on to say that the U.S. needs “to develop all of the renewables,” including battery technology to store solar power.
Later in the week, in an interview on Fox Business News, Kasich said, “I think there is such a thing as climate change.”
“I’ve been a big supporter of renewables. In my state, we are developing with solar and wind,” the lone governor left in the GOP race said. “I think that renewables, whether wind, solar, geothermal and of course the use of efficiency is very important.”
“We are not one to worship the environment but we are certainly on to manage it,” he added.
In a move that would have seemed unfathomable a year ago, former Florida governor and one time presumed favorite Jeb Bush suspended his campaign for the presidency. The son of former President George H. W. Bush and brother of former President George W. Bush, Gov. Bush failed to generate momentum in GOP debates or in early primary states.
Here is a glance at Bush’s climate change position:
While Bush struggled to find his climate voice early in the race for the nomination, by summer he had solidified his views that “the climate is changing. I don’t think anybody can argue it’s not.”
“Human activity has contributed to [climate change],” Gov. Bush frequently acknowledged. “We have a responsibility to adapt to what the possibilities are without destroying our economy, without hollowing out our industrial core.”
Bush differed from the other GOP hopefuls with his views that all energy subsidies should be eliminated. “I think tax reform ought to be to lower the rate as far as you can and eliminate as many of these subsidies, all of the things that impede the ability for a dynamic way to get to where we need to get, which is low-cost energy that is respectful of the environment.”
“The best way to produce the optimum energy mix in this country,” Bush said in an interview on Iowa Public Radio. “Is to let markets work.”
While he was critical of the Administration’s Clean Power Plan and the international agreement reached in Paris in December, Bush cited the need for “an insurance policy” on climate change. “We have to do is to adapt, to create policies of adaptation.”
“There’s someone in a garage somewhere that has a better chance of disrupting the order of things as it relates to energy than a bureaucrat inside the Department of Energy,” Bush often said.
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