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Palin Is a Global-Warming-Denying, Polar-Bear-Dissing, Pat Buchanan Acolyte

Definitely not a VP choice for anyone wanting to win environmental voters.
 
 
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Did I mention she's a hard-core denier?

Q: What is your take on global warming and how is it affecting our country? A: A changing environment will affect Alaska more than any other state, because of our location. I'm not one though who would attribute it to being man-made.

That would be McCain's VP pick, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, in a new interview. Needless to say, if humans aren't the cause of global warming, then it's a random cycle that will eventually reverse itself, so 1) you'd be crazy to mandate sharp reductions in greenhouse gas emissions like McCain (says he) wants, and 2) the polar bear can fend for itself. So it's no surprise that in May, Palin announced the state will sue the Interior Department over its decision to list the polar bear as threatened. As she explained in an op-ed for the NYT in January:

... adding polar bears to the nation's list of endangered species, as some are now proposing, should not be part of those efforts.... I strongly believe that adding them to the list is the wrong move at this time.... The Center for Biological Diversity, an environmental group, has argued that global warming and the reduction of polar ice severely threatens the bears' habitat and their existence. In fact, there is insufficient evidence that polar bears are in danger of becoming extinct within the foreseeable future.

Uhh, no. Does anybody out there still think the Arctic won't be ice free by 2020? If so, I want your money and am still trying to take more bets on this. The National Snow and Ice Data Center's Mark Serreze said on Wednesday, " No matter where we stand at the end of the melt season it's just reinforcing this notion that Arctic ice is in its death spiral."

The only question that remains is -- Can the polar bear survive the loss of its primary habitat? Even the Bush's uber- Conservative Interior Secretary Dirk Kepthorne had to admit the basic case (see Bye-polar Kempthorne: Polar bear IS endangered, but "Rule will allow continuation of vital energy production in Alaska"):

  • The polar bears need sea ice for feeding.
  • The sea ice is being destroyed by human-caused emissions, faster than the models had predicted.
  • Thus, the polar bear is endangered.

This is a very widely held scientific view:

"The survival of polar bears as a species is difficult to envisage under conditions of zero summer sea-ice cover," concludes the 2004 Arctic Climate Impact Assessment, by leading scientists from the eight Arctic nations, including the United States. Another 20Joe Romm hello04 study, by Canadian scientists, agreed: [G]iven the rapid pace of ecological change in the Arctic, the long generation time, and the highly specialised nature of polar bears, it is unlikely that polar bears will survive as a species if the sea ice disappears completely.

But Palin says "My decision is based on a comprehensive review by state wildlife officials of scientific information from a broad range of climate, ice and polar bear experts." A "broad range." Yeah. Must be the same broad group of experts McCain talked to when he said "When you say wind, solar and tide, most every expert that I know says that, if you maximize that in every possible way, the contribution that that would make given the present state of technology is very small, is very small" (see The real, Luddite McCain: "The truly clean technologies don't work").

BTW, it also looks like Palin is breaking the law on behalf of mining interests.

Finally, Palin supported Buchanan's far-right, hate-filled campaign in 1999, when she was mayor of a town of 9,000 people.

 
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