With hurricane Sandy as the opening act, President Obama, in his second inaugural speech, has elevated climate change discussion once again. Given the gridlock in Congress, just what can the administration actually accomplish without their participation?
A question also remains: what have environmentalists learned from their past failures to affect substantial emission declines and how will they help new efforts going forward?
Changing the Conversation on Climate Change
BLOOMBERG - Rohit T. Aggarwala
Politically, environmentalism has had a few good months in the U.S. Hurricane Sandy put the words “climate change” back in the national vocabulary. Republican attempts to attack Democrats for waging a “war on coal” failed to win many votes in states like Virginia and Ohio on Election Day. In his second inaugural address, President Barack Obama made climate action a priority. A climate rally in Washington is being planned for later this month, and the president has committed to conducting a “national conversation” on the subject.
We’ve seen this kind of momentum before: in 2009, at the start of the failed attempt to pass comprehensive climate legislation in Congress. In hindsight, environmentalists underestimated the obstacles they faced. Now the risk is great that they are making the same mistake again.
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Outgoing EPA chief convinced Obama serious on climate change
REUTERS - The departing chief of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Lisa P. Jackson, says she cringes whenever she is asked if President Barack Obama is truly serious about confronting climate change.
Up w/Chris Hayes Panel Discussion
In this three part panel discussion, Chris Hayes and his guests cover President Obama's inaugural speech, the gap between rhetoric and action, stopping the Keystone pipeline, and actions the EPA can take to reduce global warming emissions.
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