In another example of the interesting juxtaposition that characterizes US climate change policy, long time climate change denier, Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) announced Tuesday (Feb 4, 2014) his plans to introduce a bill allowing states to opt-out of Environmental Protection Agency regulations on power plants, saying that the regulations will cause winter blackouts. As evidence for the necessity of this opt-out plan he pointed out that January has been one of the coldest months on record, therefore disproving claims that there is global warming and climate change.
The full story can be found here
In contrast to the Senator from Oklahoma, On January 17th Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick announced a $50 million plan to help his state prepare for the effects of climate change. “The question is not whether we need to act. We’re past that,” Patrick said. “The world’s climate is changing and human activity is contributing to that change. Massachusetts needs to be ready.”
According to an article published by the Boston Herald, administration officials say Massachusetts is already feeling the effects of climate change, citing five major storms since 2010, a significant rise in Eastern Equine Encephalitis in mosquitoes that led to aerial spraying in 2012, and the 2013 closure of oyster beds for the first time in state history because of vibrio parahaemolyticus (a type of dangerous bacteria)
The city of Boston, like New York City, and others up and down the East Coast are located at sea level and are often on the front lines of environmental change. Recognizing this change for what it is and preparing for the inevitable impact it will have on our infrastructure, our economy and our ecology seems to be the only responsible course of action.
There is no doubt, it will be difficult to transition from our old ways (however useful and profitable they have been to us in the past) to environmentally friendly new ways of living. Continuing to deny vast scientific consensus in an attempt to further delay action will exacerbate the problem making these inevitable changes even harder and more costly.