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Cary Brunswick

May 13, 2014

New York should follow Vermont's lead

(Continued)

Vermont anticipates those labeling foes to take the new law to court in attempts to overturn it, so the state has set up a special food fund to pay for its defense. The legal outcome will be watched closely by those states still sitting on the fence.

Yet another dire climate report was released last week, and there are so many studies out there now that you have to wonder if enough people and lawmakers are paying attention.

And then there are the fools, such as Sen. Mitch McConnell, who continue to deny the facts and see the warnings as a liberal conspiracy.

The update to the government’s National Climate Assessment released last week is billed as the national scientific community’s position on the clear, present and future effects of greenhouse gas emissions. Naturally, the report paints another bleak picture.

Because of global warming over the past century, the U.S. is experiencing regional water scarcity, increasing torrential rains, more heat waves, worsening wildfires and the deaths of forests from invasive insect species.

Unfortunately, while most people acknowledge that climate change is occurring with negative impacts, polls indicate that they feel personally insulated from those effects and helpless to do anything about the causes.

A Gallup poll in March found that only a third of respondents thought that global warming posed a “serious threat” to their lifestyles, out of the 60 percent who actually believed it was occurring now.

Reacting to the report’s call for immediate action before it’s too late, McConnell “mocked what he described as the hypocritical stance of ‘liberal elites’ who demand strong action on climate change while failing to reduce their own carbon footprint,’’ according to CNN.

“Even if we were to enact the kind of national energy regulations the president seems to want so badly,’’ McConnell continued in arguing against government proposals to reduce fossil-fuel pollution, “it would be unlikely to meaningfully impact global emissions anyway unless other major industrial nations do the same thing.”

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