Up | February 17, 2013
>>> my story of the week the change in climate change . something pretty remarkable has happened in the last month. for several years in which global policy was side lipd after presidential campaign in which tissue was ignored it's claug its way back into the conversation. you can feel the terrain shifting beneath our feet. first there was sandy a devastating 100 year storm that hit the nation's media capital i had lighted how much danger higher sea levels can do. the elephant in the room the fact that storm intense egypt will grow in the future and combined with higher sea levels to do more damage did not go unnoticed by politicians.
>> we have a new reality when it comes to these weather patterns. we have an old infrastructure and we have old systems. and that is not a good combination. and that's one of the lessons that i'm going to take from this personally.
>> what is clear is that the storms we've experienced in the last few years is much more severe than before.
>> all up and down the east coast there are mayors many of them republicans who are being told you got to move these houses back away from the ocean. climate change will raise the water levels on a permanent basis. if you want your town insured you have to do this.
>> then came news 2012 was the warmest year ever recorded by a full degree fahrenheit . after saying hardly a word about climate the president him self to hit great credit pushed it back on the jen. he surprised observers by saying this early in the speech as the first domestic policy he mentioned after dealing with the economy.
>> we will respond to the threat of climate change . knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations . some may still deny the overwhelming judgment of science but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging fires and crippling drought and more powerful storms.
>> during tuesday's night state of the union the president once again put the climate as the first domestic policy after the economy and was more emphatic in his promises to act.
>> i urge this congress to get together, pursue a bipartisan market based solution to climate change like the one john mccain and joe lieberman worked on. if congress won't act soon to project future generations i will.
>> on thursday the government accountability office came out with a new report identifying risks to the government and at the top was fiscal exposure the federal government faces due to climate change . remarkable. darrell issa had this to say about the gao report.
>> i don't want to walk away from anything in this report. when you look at climate change and hurricane sandy and others, it points out that we have underprepared through fema and through our emergency funds including flood control for a generation.
>> finally this week senators bernie sanders and barbara boxer introduced a climate bill in the unlikely event it will pass would represent a major victory for the climate, for environmentalists and enable the environmental protection agency to regulate fracking. after several years of exile, climate policy is back on the agenda. thank god. now i don't want to minimize how far things have to go and how many challenges there are to overcome the make the challenges required to reduce the risk of total disaster. we're reminded once again the lengths the wealthiest companies with trillion of dollars on the line will go to the reserve their right to dump their pollution cost free. almost $120 million was funneled to groups denying the since of climate change on top. sizable funding from coke industries, exxon and others. that funding and pro pollution lobbying infrastructure aren't going anywhere. there's the president himself while talking about the issue has yet to indicate whether or not he'll use his authority to block the wildly destructive keystone pipeline and after his strong words in the state of the union didn't indicate in his follow up google fireside hang out the administration would break any new ground in executive action .
>> the same steps that we took with respect to energy efficiency on cars we can take on building, we can take on appliances. we can make sure that new power plants that are being built are more efficient than the old ones, and we can continue to put research and our support behind clean energy that is going to continue to help us transition away from dirtier fuels.
>> then perhaps is the strange culture of washington that used climate as a special interest issue relevant to environmental groups and not every living human on the planet. while there's an obsession over budget projections for 240 they are sanguin that arctic ice has decimated. no one will care in 30 years what the deficit was in 2013 . quick pop quiz . what was the deficit in 1953 or 1923 or heck 1883 ? the correct answer is you don't know because it doesn't matter. what does matter are the molecules in the air much more than numbers on the balance sheet. the apathy on climate change extends to people that constitutes the president's base. standard liberal activists to whine that they don't talk about issues they most care about. even when president tries to insert climate into the conversation it falls to a dull thud. washington will never make climate a priority until the left makes