The Park Record editorial, February 6-9, 2010 |

The Park Record editorial, February 6-9, 2010

If lawmakers reject climate change, we need to change lawmakers

Apparently, some Utah legislators are still not sold on the need for stronger environmental regulations. Even though the capitol building where they are debating whether climate change is real or just a political ruse is often submerged in a yellowish-gray smog, they are calling on their colleagues to pass a resolution spelling out their opposition to federal efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

This week, by a vote of 10-1, the House Natural Resources Committee approved Joint Resolution 12, which states that the Environmental Protection Agency’s call to regulate carbon emissions is based on "flawed climate data and would place significant regulatory and financial burdens on all sectors of the nation’s economy at a time when the nation’s unemployment rate exceeds 10 percent."

The resolution, which is now wending its way through the full House, goes on to characterize climate scientists as "alarmists" and that "communications between climate researchers around the globe, referred to as ‘Climategate,’ indicate a well organized and ongoing effort to manipulate and incorporate ‘tricks’ related to global temperature data in order to produce a global warming outcome."

Furthermore, the resolution claims that the impetus behind this elaborate global conspiracy is nothing more than a $7 billion "gravy train" to fund research institutions and universities. The proposed legislation concludes by asking the EPA to "halt its carbon dioxide reduction policies and programs."

Really, that’s what it says.

Most Summit County residents would probably be shocked to learn that any state legislature in the country, let alone their own, would seriously consider abandoning efforts to improve air and protect the environment.

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And that is the real problem. There is still a disconnect between those who favor and those who oppose regulating carbon emissions. Unfortunately, many environmentalists have become so strident in their message that they can only preach to the choir. At the same time, those who bristle at the mere mention of federal regulation have become so fixated on the short-term cost of controlling pollution that they can’t see the long-term advantages for their families and their livelihoods.

Therefore, as this measure moves to the floor of the state House, and then the Senate, we would urge local citizens to make it clear to the Legislature that they strongly favor efforts to reduce carbon emissions, even if they cost a little more and require conscious energy-saving efforts. If the Legislature doesn’t get the message, then we need to elect representatives who do.

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