Climate Politics

How Climate Disruption May Undermine Climate Policy

The long-term harms from climate change over the next decades may undermine support for efforts to reduce emissions

Almost two straight months of wildfires and smoke in California are a tangible sign of the impacts of climate change on our lives and our world. This article from the New York Times a couple of weeks ago does a good job of laying out why the wildfires in California are only one example of …

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Election 2020: The Montana Governor’s Race

The two candidates are neck-in-neck. But their environmental views aren’t close.

Last week, I posted about the Montana Senate race. Montana also has a tight race for governor. The candidates are the current Democratic Lieutenant Governor Mike Coney and House Republican Greg Gianforte. Coney is a long-time figure in state politics. Gianforte founded a “customer relationship software company.”  He got national attention in 2017 when he …

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What They Said About Climate Last Night

It was late in the debate and hard to follow. But the exchange about climate change was important.

There was actually a substantive discussion of climate change at the debate last night. Many people had literally tuned out by then. Others were too distracted by Trump’s interruptions.  Here are the key things that were actually said, culled from a transcript of the debate. Wallace:  . . . Mr. President, you said, I don’t …

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Double Trouble in Georgia

Both Senate seats are on the ballot in November, with big environmental stakes.

Georgia has two Senate contests due to a fluke of timing — one a regular election, the other a special election.  The regular election pits David Perdue (R) against Jonathan Ossoff (D). The special election pits Kelley Loeffler (R) against an open field, where her principal Democratic opponent is probably Rev. Raphael Warnock, the African-American …

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Big Environmental Stakes in the Big Sky State

Their records put the two Senate candidates far apart on environmental issues.

The current Supreme Court vacancy is a reminder of just how crucial the Senate is.  If there were two more Democratic Senators there today, Trump would not be able to fill Ginsburg’s seat before the election. Of course, the Senate matters for other reasons, too.  An example of the importance of the Senate in policy …

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Battle for the Senate: Alabama

Losing this seat would make it much harder to build a pro-environmental majority.

By all accounts, Doug Jones is the most endangered incumbent Democratic Senators. He won in something of a fluke in a special election, after reports surfaced that his opponent had stalked teenage girls. Now he faces a tough reelection battle. If he loses, it becomes that much more difficult to slip enough seats for a …

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Battle for the Senate: Iowa

The Iowa race features two candidates with very different views about climate change.

The Senate race in Iowa pits incumbent Joni Ernst against Democrat Theresa Greenfield.  Climate change is the area where the two contrast most strongly. Greenfield accepts the science and calls for action. Ernst is still in the “maybe it relates to a little bit to humans” phase of climate denial. She also says she’s “so …

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When Republicans Supported the Environment: Bush 41

The GOP wasn’t always the sworn enemy of environmental protection.

Younger people today probably know about George Herbert Walker Bush (R) as the father of George W. Bush and (perhaps) as the architect of the first Iraq War. But he also had some notable environmental achievements to his credit. Here are some of his accomplishments: Air Pollution Law. The 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments were …

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North Carolina: A Tight Senate Race with High Environmental Stakes

Control of the Senate may hang in the balance.

In the Tar Heel State, Republican Incumbent Thom Tillis faces a tough face against challenger Cal Cunningham. This race is central to Democratic hopes to flip the Senate. The candidates have contrasting environmental views. Thom Tillis. When Tillis ran in 2014, his main claim to fame was championing deregulation in the North Carolina legislature, which …

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Battle for the Senate: Colorado

A Republican who’s expressing support for the environment, versus a Democrat who wants to do a lot more.

The Colorado Senate race pits incumbent Republican Cory Gardner against John Hickenlooper.  Gardner makes a point of stressing his support for environmental protection and has apparently been working hard to strengthen his environment record since he moved to the Senate in 2014. Cory Gardner.  Gardner’s Senate website touts his bipartisanship. It says that he “was …

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