The Eco News Roundup brings stories and commentary about issues related to climate change, renewable energy and the environment.
TAMPA — Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) has been ubiquitous in recent days as Hurricane Irma bears down on the Sunshine State, warning of deadly winds and storm surges and imploring residents to heed evacuation orders.
“This is a catastrophic storm our state has never seen,” he cautioned at one of many news conferences.
By all accounts, Scott and other officials have aggressively tried to prepare the state and its residents for the destructive storm’s impact and immediate aftermath.
But for all of Scott’s vigor in readying Florida for Irma’s wrath, his administration has done little over the years to prepare for what scientists say are the inevitable effects of climate change that will wreak havoc in the years to come. With its far-reaching coastline and low elevation, Florida is one of the states at greatest risk from rising sea levels, extreme weather events — including more-powerful hurricanes — and other consequences of a warming planet.
Local officials, academics and even some political allies say Scott has scarcely acknowledged the problem and, along with the Republican-led legislature, has shown little interest in funding projects to help the state adapt and become more resilient in the face of storms such as Irma.
Miami’s Republican mayor called on President Donald Trump and the head of the Environmental Protection Agency Friday to acknowledge that climate change is playing a role in the extreme weather that has slammed his city and the continental U.S. this summer.
Speaking from Miami’s Emergency Operations Center in downtown, where the city’s senior public safety and political authorities will ride out Category 4 Hurricane Irma this weekend, Mayor Tomás Regalado told the Miami Herald that he believes warming and rising seas are threatening South Florida’s immediate and long-term future.
“This is the time to talk about climate change. This is the time that the president and the EPA and whoever makes decisions needs to talk about climate change,” said Regalado, who flew back to Miami from Argentina Friday morning to be in the city during the storm. “If this isn’t climate change, I don’t know what is. This is a truly, truly poster child for what is to come.”
Florida Gov. Rick Scott did not cause Irma, but he enabled the Frankenstorm. Before becoming governor in 2011, Scott had been an entrepreneur who “ specialized in privatizing healthcare and ran a hospital chain convicted of a massive healthcare fraud.”
Scott met with Carbonmongers Charles and David Koch soon after being elected, and all of a sudden Florida’s environmental laws began being gutted.
Now he will want you to give him $150 billion to rebuild his state, from your tax dollars. He and his ilk argue that it is less expensive to deal with a changing climate than to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
At BPI Campus our Progressive Agenda is:
1. People matter more than profits.
2. The earth is our home, not our trash can.
3. We need good government for both #1 and #2.
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