Sarah Palin Spreads Falsehoods, Smears On Climate Change & Clean Energy
In a December 9, 2009 Washington Post op-ed, Sarah Palin recycles predictable, conservative smears about cap-and-trade and clean energy jobs legislation. Yet as governor, Palin herself sought to reduce greenhouse gases, enter carbon trading markets, and seize the economic opportunities created by investing in new technologies.
As Governor, Palin Sought "Carbon Trading" & "Economic Opportunities" Stemming From Fighting Climate Change
We can say, however, that any potential benefits of proposed emissions reduction policies are far outweighed by their economic costs. And those costs are real... Meeting such targets would require Congress to pass its cap-and-tax plans, which will result in job losses and higher energy costs [Palin op-ed, Washington Post, 12/9/09]
Palin Sought "Opportunities For Alaska To Participate In Carbon-Trading Markets." In 2007, Gov. Sarah Palin signed Administrative Order No. 238, which created a climate change sub-cabinet. The administrative order stated, "In view of its purpose, the Climate Change Sub-Cabinet shall develop recommendations on... the opportunities for Alaska to participate in carbon-trading markets, including the offering of carbon sequestration." [Office of the Governor of Alaska, accessed 12/9/09; emphasis added]
Palin Sought "Economic Opportunities For Alaska That Might Emerge As A Result Of The Growing Response To This Global Challenge." In 2007, Gov. Sarah Palin signed Administrative Order No. 238, which created a climate change sub-cabinet. The administrative order stated, "In view of its purpose, the Climate Change Sub-Cabinet shall develop recommendations on... the identification of economic opportunities for Alaska that might emerge as a result of the growing response to this global challenge." [Office of the Governor of Alaska, accessed 12/9/09; emphasis added]
Palin Stressed the Need To "Help The Nation Reduce Its Overall Greenhouse Gas Emissions." In 2007, Gov. Sarah Palin signed Administrative Order No. 238, which created a climate change sub-cabinet. The administrative order stated, Alaska's climate change strategy must be built on sound science and the best available facts and must recognize Alaska's interest in economic growth and the development of its resources. Commercializing Alaska's great natural gas reserves through a new pipeline will improve the nation's energy security while providing a clean, low carbon fuel to help the nation reduce its overall greenhouse gas emissions." [Office of the Governor of Alaska, accessed 12/9/09; emphasis added]
Increased Investment In Clean Energy Will Create Millions Of American Green Jobs
As Media Matters Action Network has noted, a recent study from UC Berkeley found that pollution reduction and energy efficiency measures would create up to 1.9 million jobs, boost GDP by up to $111 billion and increase families' incomes by nearly $1,200 per year!
Investment In Clean Energy Technology Will Create Over 1.7 Million American Jobs. According to the Center for American Progress: "Investments in a clean-energy economy will generate major employment benefits for the entire U.S. economy. Our research finds that spending $150 billion on clean-energy investments would create roughly 1.7 million jobs. This is even after assuming a reduction in fossil fuel spending equivalent to the increase in clean-energy investments." [Center for American Progress, The Economic Benefits of Investing in Clean Energy, 6/17/09]
- Every Single State Will Gain Jobs From An Investment In Clean Energy Technologies. According to the Center for American Progress, investments in clean energy projects would create 1.7 million American jobs in every state in the country. [Center for American Progress, The Economic Benefits of Investing in Clean Energy, 6/17/09]
Investment In Clean Energy Technology Creates FOUR TIMES As Many Jobs As An Investment In Oil & Gas. According to the Center for American Progress, "spending $1 million on energy efficiency and renewable energy produces a much larger expansion of employment than spending the same amount on fossil fuels or nuclear energy. Among fossil fuels, job creation in coal is about 32 percent greater than that for oil and natural gas. The employment creation for energy efficiency-retrofitting and mass transit-is 2.5 times to four times larger than that for oil and natural gas. With renewable energy, the job creation ranges between 2.5 times to three times more than that for oil and gas." [Center for American Progress, The Economic Benefits of Investing in Clean Energy, 6/17/09]
Investment In Renewable Energy Has Already Salvaged Many Manufacturing Facilities Closed During Economic Downturn. Across America, factories and plants abandoned by the old economy have been re-tooled and re-opened to satisfy the growing demand for new energy technologies. For instance, once hopeless manufacturing plants in Pennsylvania, Iowa, and Michigan have re-energized their communities by creating jobs and leading the charge toward a new energy future. [Bloomberg, 4/2/09; Star Tribune, 4/22/09; Grand Rapids Press, 3/6/08]
Science Shows Climate Change Is Real
This scandal obviously calls into question the proposals being pushed in Copenhagen. I've always believed that policy should be based on sound science, not politics. [Palin op-ed, Washington Post, 12/9/09]
Palin Herself Believed Human Activity Contributed To Climate Change, Said, "It's Real; We Need To Do Something About It." During a CBS News interview, Katie Couric asked Sarah Palin, "Is [global warming] man-made, though in your view?" Palin responded, "You know there are - there are man's activities that can be contributed to the issues that we're dealing with now, these impacts. I'm not going to solely blame all of man's activities on changes in climate. Because the world's weather patterns are cyclical. And over history we have seen change there. But kind of doesn't matter at this point, as we debate what caused it. The point is: it's real; we need to do something about it." [CBS News, 9/30/08]
NOAA: "The 2000 - 2009 Decade Will Be The Warmest On Record." According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the Department of Commerce:
- Global land and ocean annual surface temperatures through October are the fifth warmest on record, at 1.01 degrees F above the long-term average.
- NOAA scientists project 2009 will be one of the 10 warmest years of the global surface temperature record, and likely finish as the fourth, fifth or sixth warmest year on record.
- The 2000 - 2009 decade will be the warmest on record, with its average global surface temperature about 0.96 degree F above the 20th century average. This will easily surpass the 1990s value of 0.65 degree F.
- Ocean surface temperatures (through October) were the sixth warmest on record, at 0.85 degree F above the 20th century average.
- Land surface temperatures through October were the fifth warmest on record, at 1.44 degree F above the 20th century average.
- Arctic sea ice extent reached its third smallest annual minimum on record behind 2007 and 2008. The past five years have produced the lowest sea ice extents on record. [NOAA, accessed 12/9/09]
World Meteorological Organization: The 2000s Are The Warmest Decade On Record. According to the World Meteorological Organization, "The year 2009 is likely to rank in the top 10 warmest on record since the beginning of instrumental climate records in 1850, according to data sources compiled by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). The global combined sea surface and land surface air temperature for 2009 (January-October) is currently estimated at 0.44°C ± 0.11°C (0.79°F ± 0.20°F) above the 1961-1990 annual average of 14.00°C/57.2°F. The current nominal ranking of 2009, which does not account for uncertainties in the annual averages, places it as the fifth-warmest year. The decade of the 2000s (2000-2009) was warmer than the decade spanning the 1990s (1990-1999), which in turn was warmer than the 1980s (1980-1989). More complete data for the remainder of the year 2009 will be analysed at the beginning of 2010 to update the current assessment." [WMO, accessed 12/9/09]