I really don’t see the point of this bill, or how it could possibly do anything to fix climate change. The Senate is about to release its own version of the climate bill (remember, the House of Representatives already passed a not-great-but-not-terrible climate bill last year), and just in time for Earth Day, Senator John Kerry has released some key details about the bill. And it’s a horror movie. It’s like the Senate read up on everyone’s worst fears and decided to twist the knife a bit deeper.
No gas tax. No more EPA authority to regulate CO2 under the Clean Air Act. No more state authority, like what we have in California, to set tighter rules. More natural gas. More “clean coal.” And the ultimate middle finger? Agriculture, which I’m assuming will include factory farms, would be entirely exempt.
Listen, I get it. John Kerry is trying to put together a bill that can pass, and that means compromises. Get it done and fix it later. And Kerry’s bill is said to meet the same targets as the House bill’s 80 percent greenhouse gas reduction by 2050.
But here’s the problem. Meeting those targets, and really meeting them, is going to require fundamental changes in how we use energy, how we grow food, and how and where we live. Any plan that entrenches the status quo will only ever work on paper. For the same reason you can’t give children free rein over the school lunch menu (and those of us with man-crushes on Jamie Oliver know how well that goes), leaving grown-up choices to polluting industry does not and will never work. It should be “you’ll eat your veggies and LIKE IT” time for them, not all-you-can-eat Tater Tots and pizza bites.
∞ posted at 10:30 by stevesimitzis