It’s no surprise that most Republicans have contempt for the global environment. For them, business comes first even at the expensive of harming our natural resources and wildlife. It wasn’t always this way. Back in the 1970s, Richard Nixon was a champion for the environment. After all, he started the Environmental Protection Agency and NOAA. Their role has moved on to monitoring and assessing the earth’s climate change. Over one half of Republican congressman deny climate change science and the conclusion that the earth is heating up due to anthropogenic reasons. Why the sudden change of heart?
The anti-environmental persona of the GOP arose in 1991 after the fall of communist Russia. Once the “Red Scare” was dismantled it was swapped with a new movement that was anti-environment. Looking at the issue a little more deeply, it is no surprise that the American populous is deeply divided on their views of the environment. Taking a look at the environmental scores for the LCV from 1970 to 2013, it can be seen that the movement away from pro environmental issues began in 1990s. The general public’s view of the environment is largely depended on their political party affiliation.
During the beginning of the 1990’s we had Bill Clinton as president and a newly released book by then vice-president Al Gore titled “Earth in the Balance”. The environmental movement grew particularly strong during the Rio Earth Summit of 1992. This was met with the growing opposition from the conservative base who consider is a form of socialism. They consider environmentalism a form of communism which is so far from the truth. Basically, the republican part of 1974 is not the same party of 2014. Times have changed and so have the people. The conservative party is more psychologically conditioning its supports to an authoritarian viewpoint and a more hardline viewpoint.
Regardless, the damage has been done. The republican part is hurting our environment. The situation we are currently in is growing more grave by the moment. Politicians need to put their party loyalty and bickering aside and come to a solution to end the climate crisis.
As long as republicans continue to block key legislation to curb carbon emissions and reduce the impact of global warming, our future’s certainty remains at risk.
Fracking is a new Risk
A new risk being assessed is the impact of tracking on wildlife. With the natural gas boom many energy companies have resorted to this controversial means of extracting natural gas from the earth. The University of Wisconsin has been studying data regarding the air, water, land, and impact on wildlife. One of the major problems with tracking is groundwater contamination caused by the toxic chemicals used to mine the oil. The oil and gas industry counters that their is no proof of water contamination, a position that is unsurprising to say the least. The Safe Drinking Water Act has given tracking an exemption which means their is no monitoring or regulation imposed on the amount of chemicals used in shelling. Fracking is not safe for the environment and needs to be regulated.