「地球輸了」 美國共和黨掌國會 環團憂心 | 環境資訊中心

「地球輸了」 美國共和黨掌國會 環團憂心




美國參議員Mitch McConnell。(來源:Gage Skidmore)


出身於產煤州肯塔基的共和黨參議員領袖Mitch McConnell,他認為歐巴馬的政策是一場「煤的戰爭」,並經常抨擊「歐巴馬執政對肯塔基煤業設下重重限制」,批評美國環保署限制燃煤電廠溫室氣體排放量的規定,不難看出共和黨明年1月正式掌權後的政策方向。




當明年1月新國會復會,產油州的奧克拉荷馬代表、公開駁斥氣候變遷的共和黨議員James Inhofe,很可能主持參議院環境和公共工程委員會。


政府間氣候變化專門委員會(IPCC)的第五次綜合評估報告警告氣候變遷不可逆災難發生的可能性。Inhofe 3日則對此回應,「我們的工業化經濟要達到零碳排根本不可能,也證明IPCC不過是個環境左派。」


儘管如此,Inhofe 3日仍說,「IPCC所鼓吹的極端氣候管制計畫將會破壞全球經濟,飆高能源價格。美國正在經歷能源復興,有機會讓美國邁向能源獨立,強化國家安全和未來世代的能源安全。在經濟動盪、美國利益威脅增加的時刻,IPCC的報告不過是環保左派唱的高調。」

美國表現不樂觀 歐巴馬否決權是最後防線


地球之友總裁Erich Pica 5日表示,「選舉結束了,地球輸了。」

塞拉俱樂部執行長Michael Brune說,「儘管氣候運動所需資金龐大,選舉大敗了,代表氣候行動的一方被擊敗了,被企業利益收買的候選人和惡劣的選舉人操弄技巧獲得勝利──但這場選舉可看見候選人應對氣候危機的方式產生關鍵變化。連最反環境的候選人都必須漂綠自己的投票記錄,並且改變他們的氣候否定論。氣候問題的形式正在改變。」



The Planet Loses as Republicans Seize Control of Congress
WASHINGTON, DC, November 5, 2014 (ENS)

Voters gave Republicans control of the Senate in Tuesday’s midterm elections with a majority of 52 seats to the Democrats’ 48. The GOP also maintained control of the House of Representatives, making Congress entirely Republican.

For the environment, this will mean fossil fuels such as coal and oil will receive congressional support, while renewable energy and environmental protections will be left behind.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell from the coal-producing state of Kentucky has often railed against “the burdensome regulations placed on Kentucky coal jobs by the Obama Administration”.

Calling President Barack Obama’s policies a “War on Coal,” in the same speech, McConnell took aim at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s rule to limit greenhouse gas emissions from coal-burning power plants, signalling the Republican direction when the new majority takes its seats in January.

Claiming that Obama’s policies “have contributed to a loss of 7,000 Kentucky jobs in that industry” since 2009, McConnell said, “Those of us who represent coal states have made numerous attempts to rein in the EPA, but the Senate Majority Leader and fellow Democrats here in Washington have blocked us at every turn.”

“Last September, I introduced the Saving Coal Jobs Act,” said McConnell. The bill was another attempt to rein in the EPA’s actions to curb heat-trapping greenhouse gas emissions.

McConnell’s bill included language prohibiting any new carbon emissions standards on new or existing power plants as mandated by federal agencies without the approval of Congress.

However, the U.S. Supreme Court in June authorized the EPA to regulate carbon dioxide, the most prevalent greenhouse gas, from coal-fired power plants, but only if these sources emit air pollutants other than greenhouse gases as well.

When the new Congress reconvenes in January, Republican Senator James Inhofe, an avowed climate denier who represents the oil-producing state of Oklahoma, ‎will likely head the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. He is presently the Ranking Member of that committee.

Inhofe has called climate change a “hoax” and has traveled to the UN international climate negotiations to make his views known.

On Monday, in response to the release of the International Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Synthesis Report, warning of irreversible and cataclysmic climate changes, Inhofe said, “The idea that our advanced industrialized economy would ever have zero carbon emissions is beyond extreme and further proof that the IPCC is nothing more than a front for the environmental left.”

In fact, the IPCC is a United Nations body, founded in 1988, which evaluates climate change science. The IPCC assesses research on climate change and synthesizes it into assessment reports every five to seven years.

The current IPCC assessment is the work of more than 830 coordinating lead authors, lead authors and review editors from over 80 countries, covering a range of scientific, technical and socio-economic views and expertise. More than 1,000 contributing authors and 2,000 expert reviewers participated in the process of review and revision.

Nevertheless, Inhofe said Monday, “It comes as no surprise that the IPCC is again advocating for the implementation of extreme climate change regulations that will cripple the global economy and send energy prices skyrocketing. The United States is in the midst of an energy renaissance that has the potential to bring about American energy independence, which would strengthen our national security and energy reliability for generations into the future. At a time of economic instability and increased threats to American interests, the IPCC’s report is little more than high hopes from the environmental left.”

With senators with such views in the majority, there is no chance that the Senate with ratify the legally-binding global treaty to limit climate change that world governments are expected to agree at the UN climate summit in December 2015 in Paris.

But environmentalists are not giving up or retreating.

Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune said, “Despite the climate movement’s significant investments and an unprecedented get out the vote program, strong voices for climate action were defeated and candidates paid for by corporate interests and bolstered by sinister voter suppression tactics won the day.”

“But don’t be fooled. This election marked a pivotal change in how candidates confront the climate crisis,” said Brune. “Even the most anti-environmental candidates were compelled to greenwash their voting records and change their tune on climate denial. The climate on climate is changing.

Friends of the Earth President Erich Pica said today, “The election’s over – and the planet lost.”

“The next Congress will be controlled by politicians elected with millions of dollars of the Koch brothers’ oil money – putting at risk the vital environmental protections we’ve fought so hard to achieve,” said Pica.

Right now, the only barrier to the wholesale dismantling of our existing environmental laws is President Obama and his veto pen. So, for the next two years, you and I have a new job – telling the President to keep that veto pen warm.”

※ 全文及圖片詳見:ENS


蔡麗伶(LiLing Barricman)

In my healing journey and learning to attain the breath awareness, I become aware of the reality that all the creatures of the world are breathing the same breath. Take action, here and now. From my physical being to the every corner of this out of balance's planet.