Friday, October 31, 2008

Presidential candidates not talking much about climate change

As US elections are getting into the final phase there is less and less talk about climate change, and about possible solutions to fight global climate change. At the beginning both McCain and Obama were pointing out the need for aggressive action to reduce US CO2 emissions , but as the election day is getting closer talk about climate change is nowhere to be heard.

It is actually very simple politics as both candidates aim to get as much votes as possible, and with the current financial crisis their talks are oriented only on how to avoid country's recession. And while both candidates (seemingly) agree that country should turn to renewables in order to reduce carbon emissions they refuse to talk further about this new energy policy because renewable energy is still very expensive in short, and even medium run, and of course there is this serious financial crisis and traditional American coal dependence as well. US is world's second consumer of coal, with only China ahead, and there are significant number of US states whose economies are depending on coal (most notably Ohio and Pennsylvania) so presidential candidates are very careful not to say something that could turn votes to other side.

Both presidential candidates used to talk about plans that would include clean coal technologies as a certain middle point between environmental wishes on one side and coal industries on other. These technologies have potential to be successful, but they need much more funds, and of course more time, and as the time goes bye global warming impact will increase its impact.

But of course what is global warming compared to few more votes? At this moment nothing. Hopefully once elections end we will see much stronger turn to renewables because if there is something that this country really needs then this is new aggressive energy policy to tackle global warming.

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