The Truth Comes Out

Senator Kirk Watson’s “No Regrets Bill,” which calls on the TCEQ to develop standards to cut greenhouse gas emissions, is making some headway in the legislature. If passed, the bill would help stimulate our economy and position Texas as a leader in greenhouse gas reduction. It’s great to see bills that represent how far we’ve come in our fight against global warming, but after reading last week’s New York Times, it’s apparent we’ve got a long way to go.

The article “Industry Ignored Its Scientists on Climate” was disturbing to say the least. Based on documents filed in a recent federal lawsuit, it gave an in-depth look at what we knew all along: Global warming is real and humans contribute to it.

However, something we didn’t know was that in 1995 the Global Climate Coalition ignored its trade industry scientists who had agreed that global warming was a problem and that the role of human contribution could not be denied. For more than a decade, the coalition led a campaign to persuade the public that greenhouse gases were not a problem. Something else we didn’t know: The coalition was (yup, you guessed it) financially funded by large corporations and groups representing the oil, coal and auto industries. But why would any group ignore its own qualified scientists on such a crucial issue?

The NYT article compares the coalition’s actions to those of the tobacco industry. For years, tobacco companies insisted that there was no relationship between cigarette smoking and lung cancer, though countless studies, facts, and research from medical advisors proved otherwise.

Whether for financial gain or just due to plain ignorance, there’s no honorable reason to discount educated, credentialed professionals and cloud the public’s mind through obfuscation and doubt. The Global Climate Coalition disbanded in 2002, and while it didn’t convince everyone, Gov. Perry and TCEQ Chairman Shaw didn’t hesitate to buy into the lies. At a time when the rest of the world is moving forward in the fight against global warming, our Texas leaders (including members of the Texas School Board of Education) are still questioning whether it even exists. There’s something wrong with this picture.

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  1. Posted May 1, 2009 at 9:21 am | Permalink

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  2. Posted May 11, 2009 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

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  3. Posted May 17, 2010 at 11:46 pm | Permalink

    Lung Cancer scared the hell out of me that is why i do not smoke cigarettes anymore.`;*

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