Commentary

Conservative NC lawmakers: Denying climate change but at least willing to address one symptom

Climate change - droughtIt’s become a bizarre article of faith on the modern American Right that climate change and the science demonstrating the human role in bringing it about are all part of some diabolical plot by liberal academics and activists bent on limiting “freedom” and obtaining more funding. Things have gotten so bad that it’s practically forbidden for conservative politicians to even sound like they care about the environment.

In the bill the North Carolina House passed yesterday to repeal the requirement that the state adopt air quality standards for fracking operations, lawmakers even went to the trouble of changing the name of the state “Ecosystem Enhancement Program” (too warm and fuzzy apparently) to the bland and corporate “Division of Mitigation Services.”

Fortunately, it appears that it may still be okay to do a few things to help the environment (and even address the effects of  climate change) so long as you don’t really admit that that’s what you’re doing. Hence, the introduction this week by conservative state senators of legislation called the “Birds and Bees Act.”

As Raleigh’s News & Observer makes clear in this story this morning, the intent of the bill is laudable — to help more bees (a key element of our global food system) survive. Moreover, it’s well-established that one of the chief causes of bee depopulation is climate change.

Just don’t look for any admission of this critical linkage in the law or the explanations that will be forthcoming from lawmakers. Instead, bet your bottom dollar that the “Birds and Bees Act” bill will get explained with chuckles and sold as program to help farmers. All of which is fine and true — it would just be nice to hear conservative politicians admit why such action has become necessary.

3 Comments


  1. Alex

    March 12, 2015 at 9:25 am

    I don’t think that folks are denying climate change. The earth has warmed and cooled in different periods for millions of years. This has happened both before and after the burning of fossil fuels so what most people are doubting is whether the current warming is caused by human intervention or is just a natural occurrence from solar disturbances,etc. The thought that we can change the earth’s weather through government regulations from our little spot in the universe is probably just an illusion, almost bordering on stupidity. Even more crazy is the thought that we could generate enough power from renewables to supply all of our current energy needs. If you look at all of the studies, it would be impossible to do this in the near future.

  2. david esmay

    March 12, 2015 at 9:46 am

    Yes Alex, but it is the rate of climate change since the beginning of the industrial revolution that is alarming. There have been no catastrophic celestial events, comets, meteors, etc. that have caused mass extinctions in the distant past. 98% of all scientists are in agreement that it is being fueled by human activity, the other 2% are on the Koch payroll.

  3. LayintheSmakDown

    March 12, 2015 at 11:15 am

    When you look at all the instances of climate change advocates, there is no wonder there are huge questions from regular citizens and scientists alike. When NOAA has to go back and change historical data that shows significant cooling over time in order to have the data fit the narrative then something is amiss.

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