Save the Net

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

What Can Be Done?

Many of us were taught long ago that the Earth is God’s creation, and that we have a duty to care for it—to “till and tend the garden.” However, we are not good stewards of the garden if we allow it to be ravaged by the forces of climate change brought by the heedless pursuit of material things. Many of us have worked as conservationists to protect the living landscape of our country—the great American land. If climate change is not addressed with urgency, the consequences will be devastating for America’s natural areas. From the vast wilderness areas to the small community land trust lands, from the noble efforts of Theodore Roosevelt to today’s conservation efforts—our protected areas are now at risk. We are on the brink of the greatest tragedy in American conservation history—if we let it happen. We have not created protected areas across our great land for them to become experimental sites for monitoring the effects of climate change.

President George W. Bush and his administration have shown no interest in giving positive leadership on the climate change challenge. They have opposed the Kyoto Protocol and refused to work with the international community within the framework of the U.N. climate treaty. They have opposed the McCain-Lieberman climate bill as well as efforts to treat carbon dioxide as a pollutant under the Clean Air Act and to strengthen vehicle mileage standards, and they have pursued a wrongheaded energy strategy while resisting international efforts to frame renewable energy goals.

We cannot know how much the positions of the Bush administration will change for the better or if they will change at all. We must hope for the best but plan for the worst. We therefore need a strategy that does not depend on the Bush administration cooperation and one that makes it increasingly difficult for the administration to persist in its opposition.

Changing U.S. energy and climate policies has proven extremely difficult in the face of powerful industry opposition. That is why a powerful popular movement for change is so essential. I am
reminded in this context of Teddy Roosevelt’s words:

“Here is your country—
Do not let anyone take it or its glory away from you
Do not let selfish men or greedy interests skim
Your country of its beauty, its riches or its romance.
The world and the future and your very children shall
Judge you according as you deal with this sacred trust.”

President Theodore Roosevelt

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?