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Donald F. Boesch
President, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science

Donald F. Boesch

Donald F. Boesch, an oceanographer, is president of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science and Vice Chancellor for Environmental Sustainability for the University System of Maryland. ALL POSTS

Not a partisan issue

Q: What does the outcome of the Massachusetts Senate election mean for the chances of a climate bill passing the Senate this year?

The Senate considered bipartisan cap-and-trade legislation by McCain(R)-Lieberman(D) in 2005 and Lieberman(D)-Warner(R) in 2008. Why can't it pass a bipartisan Kerry(D)-Graham(R) cap-and-trade/clean energy bill in 2010?

A recent national poll by prominent Republican pollster Frank Lunz found that only a small minority (18%) of American voters do not believe that climate change is real. In fact, contrary to popular belief, more Republicans believe that climate change is definitely or probably (43%) caused at least in part by humans than probably not or definitely not (33%). Over all, a large majority of those polled agreed that it doesn't matter if there is or isn't climate change, it is still in America's best interest to develop new sources of energy that are clean, reliable, efficient and safe. These respondents support cap-and-trade because clean energy will liberate us from the oil addiction that risks our national security.

If the lesson of the Massachusetts election is that Congress should stop and listen to the citizens, then a bipartisan Senate should be able to pass a climate change/clean energy bill this year. There is no time to waste.

By Donald F. Boesch  |  January 23, 2010; 8:35 AM ET Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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Newsflash to Mary1961 -- the federal government already regulates utilities and has since the 1920's.

We also already have a cap-and-trade program for sulfur dioxide that began in the early 1990's. It resulted in a 60% drop in sulfur dioxide emissions and a similar reduction in damage from acid rain.

Adopting C & T for carbon doesn't extend gov't's reach into anything, it simply says "instead of operating under rule A that advantages fossil fuels, we'll operate under rule B that puts the true cost of fossil fuels into their pricing."

Same government, different rule.

Posted by: truly1 | January 24, 2010 6:28 PM
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You first have to assume there is a climate situation that either can be changed or needs to be changed.

Then you have to assume that the warmers cult are smart enough to do something about it and not actually make matters worse.

Personally when people start talking about spending trillions to deflect the suns rays away from the earth... it should make rational people a little nervous.

What I do know is that the warmers aren't special. They have no extra- intelligence or insight. They are just uninspiring zealots with an unproven agenda. Since they can't provide facts and hard data they have decided to adopt warming as a religion.

Yes one has to assume quite a bit to be a warmer and even more to be an uninformed believer. And you know what they say about assume...

Posted by: Straightline | January 24, 2010 9:04 AM
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Here are a Few of the MANY Scientists Who Believe Global Warming is Primarily Caused by Natural Processes and NOT caused by Co2.

- William M. Gray, Professor of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University [1] [2]

- Sallie Baliunas, astronomer, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics [1]

- Don Easterbrook, emeritus professor of geology, Western Washington University [1]

- Khabibullo Abdusamatov, mathematician and astronomer at Pulkovskaya Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences [1]

- Fred Singer, Professor emeritus of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia [1] [2]

- Frederick Seitz, retired, former solid-state physicist, former president of the National Academy of Sciences [1]

- Willie Soon, astrophysicist, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics [1]

- George V. Chilingar, Professor of Civil and Petroleum Engineering at the University of Southern California [1]

- Ian Clark, hydrogeologist, professor, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Ottawa [1]

- Richard Lindzen, Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Atmospheric Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology [1]

I will listen to these guys instead of Al Gore who thinks the “Earth’s core temperature is several millions of degrees”. Al is also Vice President of the CHICAGO (hint) Climate Exchange and stands to make Billions if Cap and Trade legislation passes. That almost sounds like a conflict of interest? Hmmmmmm

Posted by: Senator_Salesman | January 23, 2010 12:38 PM
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While I respect mr. Boesch's credentials as a scientist, I disagree with his political and economic assessment related to cap and trade.

Cap and trade *is* a partisan issue because it is perceived as extending the reach of government regulation, taxation, and interference in the economic life of America.

The general public is suspicious of a government scheme that will cause teh rise of the cost of commodities as well as hurt all Americans in a general "recession".

Cap and Trade will hurt the USA, not help it.

Posted by: mary1961 | January 23, 2010 10:10 AM
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