I believe the most important challenge facing this country and the world is Climate Change.
As I shared in my biography, I was first made conscious of environmental issues by a second-grade lesson in ‘green-house gases.’ My father was a stickler about recycling and carefully disposing of harmful chemicals. Our family was actively protecting the environment well before most of our neighbors even considered the impact of human activity on the environment.
Human activities have at least exacerbated the problem.
We have to quit tolerating alternative facts on this subject.
Even if you would rather not think that Environmental Change is a result of human impact on the climate — for whatever reason . . . you cannot deny:
- The rising temperatures and glacial melting.
- The rising sea levels, increased storm activity and coastal flooding
- Increasing deforestation by fire
- Broadening of areas of drought and famine.
Even if they are all part of a natural cycle of the planet, unrelated to the presence of humans, let’s just agree to disagree and start dealing with the reality.
Temperatures are rising and glaciers are melting. That part can’t be denied. They’re numbers. People of every political stripe have to acknowledge the numbers. The Sea is rising. Again numbers.
- Begin formal development of National and Local strategies for predicting and mitigating the impacts of rising temperatures and sea levels on our:
- National Security
- The long-term financial requirements
- Our coastline and coastal economies.
- Forced emigration
- Our ports
- Our drinking water
- Our Emergency Preparedness Budget
- Defense and Law Enforcement needs
- Food Production
- Energy requirements and availability, etc., etc, etc.
And at the same time:
- Fund Scientific Research and Development heavily because this is an emergency and we need the smartest people on the planet working overtime. I will support American Science to lead the way.
I also believe we should take a few additional actions, just in case the Scientists are right about the human-warming link:
- Heavily subsidize industries that are developing renewable energy systems, especially in coal-based economic zones.
- Subsidize homeowners, through tax relief, for installation of energy generating systems and electric automobiles
- Seriously increase the Federal Assistance to local Mass Transit Systems, to mid-range Commuter Systems and to Amtrak.
As a result of incentives offered during the Obama administration, alternative energy is now mainstream and economical. In fact, last year, my solar system actually produced 35% more energy than we consumed and will pay for itself in less than six years and then begin generating income.
An important result of prudent ecological stewardship will be the reduction of America’s dependence on foreign oil.
Decreasing greenhouse gas emissions helps to reduce healthcare costs related to the treatment of respiratory diseases like asthma and COPD, as well as countless other ailments resulting from a decrease of atmospheric ozone and an increase in atmospheric toxins.
And finally, an important result of prudent ecological stewardship will be the reduction of America’s dependence on fossil fuels. As we decrease our dependence on foreign oil, we will reduce and eventually eliminate the requirement to protect the oil supply chain, eliminating the costly conflicts that requires.