Sunday, October 25, 2009

Opinion: What should the government role be in addressing climate change?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/10/24/AR2009102402134.html

31 comments:

JakeK said...

Well I just watched Disney's Planet Earth last nite in Blu-ray, and i must say, that is some touching stuff. By the end my mom was literally yelling, "WHAT CAN WE DO AL GORE?!?". So after going through the misty-eyed witnessing of the death of a polar bear, I do believe we do need to put a foot toward looking into the effects of climate change. The government should be providing reasonable funding into reasearch of the matter. The Green Movement, however, is a dubious, hypocritical, feel-good project which should not be funded. Let the hollywood actresses talk about how their oscar dresses are made of recycled hairballs and lint. It still doesn't chande the fact that they fly around on nice private jets and helicopters which aren't very ecofriendly. Anyways, save the polar bears; blow up san fransisco (just kidding).

morgank said...

I believe that the government should pay attention to the climate changes that are affecting out planet and, agreeing with JakeK above, that there should be some funding to research this.

AAgostini said...

The government should have a major role in addressing climate change. The problem is at a global scale. For any significant change to occur the solution must also be on a large scale. The U.S. produces the most green house gas per capita and the government needs to help take responsibility for the United States' impact on the planet. After refusing to sign to Kyoto Treaty, the U.S. gained an image of being irresponsible and uncooperative. These current steps, although small, are at least in the right direction, and may gain some positive feedback in the international environmental protective community. The government needs to put forth effort to cut emissions now and research for the future.

Tereza said...

There definitely should be government involvement with the enviornmental issues arising in our lifetime. I think with this bill the Senate is taking the right steps to address the climate change, which our country needed to take responsibilty for. Another major point presented by Edward J. Markey is to get China involved because the participation of the Chinese is crucial.

jmarczewski said...

I feel the government should not put forth as much of an effort to address climate change as they currently are. While it is completely suitable for public advertisements, books, and, yes, slanted movies to be endorsed by the government (if they choose to do so), I feel it is not necessary for them to fund major reformation to go green. For instance, the article mentions how energy may cost more if it isn't as environmentally friendly as other options. I feel there shouldn't be laws enforced that make average citizens pay more for "standard" energy than "green" energy; it should be their choice. All in all, government should play a minor role in the fiasco of climate change. This doesn't mean I don't support trying to help the environment...it just means I don't think laws should be implicated to do so.

EBilton said...

I think that the government should control climate change, because they can make laws to regulate how much industries can burn coal, and other things as well. They should also fund climate change.

MKlinka said...

Well, the U.S. didn't sign the Kyoto protocol, so it's a little late in attempting to remedy climate change, which is a problem that hasn't been proven to be humanity's fault anyway. That said, I think this certainly is a step in the correct direction, because coal is decidedly nonrenewable and prices for it will only go up, we should try and wean ourselves off coal. As such, the government role in addressing climate change should be that of a laissez-faire approach , the government has more important things to spend money on than theories. I do, however feel that the government should champion renewable energy sources in the interest of saving money.

aprichard said...

The senate took a small step forward... but that doesn't do too much when one has set themselves a mile behind the starting line. As a side comment, auctioning off pollution permits is wrong. Why should others be excluded from helping with the nation's enviromental clean-up because they have the most money?
The government should be monitoring our use of fossil fuels and coal as well as increase use of alternate fuel systems (wind, solar, nuclear, electric, etc...). That alone would help the U.S take another small step towards the starting line. Sure there are many ways that individuals can do small things to help the climate, but that is just scratching the surface. The government needs to keep corprate America in check. The government should have climate change higher up on their agenda. About time their doing something even though it won't happen to 2020. That is still to long and America will be farther back the longer they wait. However, everything does help.
The government should take a more active role in climate control, monitor use of fossil fuels, focus on alternative fuels, and tackle corporate America.

Famigliettim said...

Wow JakeK had some very "interesting" comments. I believe we should control greenhouse emissions with stricter standards. the one problem with this is how much money we need for funding these projects. we should also try to move further away from fossil fuel emissions, while no alternative seems entirely plausible, electric batteries have made phenomenal strides in the past decade, so a new solution seems possible. Nuclear power plants would also help, because believe it or not, they produce clean energy...until an incident like the one in Chernobyl happens, but those are few and far between. the government should try to establish this mainly because as the third largest country in the world, we need to not have the reputation of being the most hypocritical about climate change, being almost the sole reason for "global warming".

Diana said...

The government needs to get majorly involved in addressing climate change. Government has the authority to regulate what kind of light bulbs we use or how much emissions cars are giving off. Even though this issue is very important for the U.S., every country needs to participate in trying to help the issue of climate change. If everyone does not jointly try to help, it will do no good on a worldly scale.

rlepak said...

I think the government needs to be more involved with the climate change issure, first by creating more funding for research, and next they also need to be setting more restrictions on the pollution we create as a nation. If the US doesn't have high standards to protect its environment, then the rest of the world will not. Our country is always in the spotlight, and if we want things to change, we have to be the ones to start making those changes.

Tyler Kehoe said...

This is what i believe. There is only one planet Earth that humans know. What is going to happen if we just let people do whatever they want to do with the environment. Now even if you dont believe in the corrolation between climate change and humans affect on the environment, why would helping our home planet be the best and most natural planet it could be be a problem? Governments role should not be absolute but should regulate and monitor and investigate really what the real reason is; both on the state and national level.

Brandon D said...

I believe that government should definetly become more involved with addressing climate change. They have the power to regulate environmental factors, as well as setting standards. We need to start making some changes to save our environment.

Astoiber said...

part 1 Climate change is inevitable. Humans cannot drastically change the global climate. And even with all of the green movements and eco friendly changes, would that even change the climate for the better, or at all? Humans have a very good ability to adapt to their surroundings. So i believe rather than blame ourselves, we should deal with it. because the earth changes regardless of what is on it. If the earth wants to get rid of the parasite that the human species is, it will do so, just wait and see.

part 2. global warming is a scam by democrats to betray the trust of stupid citizens that feel guilty for being stupid, and to get money, votes and power.

part 3 the government should not be involved with addressing climate change. its not that i dont think people should be environmentally conscious and active in making the world a better place, I just beleive the government wants power and doesn't care about the environment regardless of who is in power. ultimately it is up to the individual to improve our world. "be the change you want to see in the world". i believe that everyone should live by this phrase.

part 4 know what you are supporting. be aware of how the product you are consuming was produced and if you are giving money to a company or organization that is environmentally irresponsible. It may be cheaper to buy the mass produced product that was made in some 3rd world country sweat shop by child slaves, but the more expensive locally made, environmentally friendly product would not just benefit you, but the earth and others as well

part 5 don't give in to propaganda. so al gore is putting on the peer pressure for you to go green? get a mind of your own!!! Do the research. be your own person. don't give up your rights to a power hungry government that doesn't care about you or the environment. and most of all be the change!! don't wait for the government to save you. act now.

or by the hummer anyway.you'll be long dead before anything serious happens.
...right?

ayork said...

Mr. Stoiber,

Global warming is a scam made up by Democrats? I completely disagree, and I believe almost every sane scientist would too. I believe that the government MUST get involved because who else will? As much as the interest groups try to do, the government can make such a huge difference. Sure, people might argue that the government squanders a lot of that money, but the same could be said for any aspect of government. I feel that the government has the best chance of changing anything in a rapidly changing environmental world.

Ryan Paprocki said...

"part 1 Climate change is inevitable. Humans cannot drastically change the global climate. And even with all of the green movements and eco friendly changes, would that even change the climate for the better, or at all?"

Of course we can make a change for the better. We have the power and influence to make a difference so we should lead the world at fighting this global issue.

"Humans have a very good ability to adapt to their surroundings. So i believe rather than blame ourselves, we should deal with it. because the earth changes regardless of what is on it."

People who live in Miami, Florida won't be able to "adapt" when the entire city is going to be completely engulfed with water. Also, what about other animals? Global warming is harming them even right now as you're reading this. Yes, the Earth "changes" in some ways, regardless of what is on it, but you've hit a massive equivocation here.

"part 2. global warming is a scam by democrats to betray the trust of stupid citizens that feel guilty for being stupid, and to get money, votes and power."

Lol. Ok Rush Limbaugh.

"part 3 the government should not be involved with addressing climate change. its not that i dont think people should be environmentally conscious and active in making the world a better place, I just beleive the government wants power and doesn't care about the environment regardless of who is in power."

Ok honestly if the government shouldn't be involved with addressing climate change than who will? Just a bunch of highly intelligent, under payed scientists? We need the government's money and power. John Redneck with his H-2 Hummer certainly doesn't care about the environment. The government isn't as self-absorbed as these people who eg. waste away the world's oil supply. It's simply not good enough to make caring about the environment as just a good rule of thumb. Since people are generally morons we need mandates.

KLatour said...

I believe the government is on the right track with the bill that is in the Senate right now. Our environment, among other things, is not currently in its best state, however, I believe that with this bill and more effort (along with funding) being dedicated to the issue, carbon emissions will decrease and this will, in turn, help the environment.

jreichart said...

As a fairly conservative yet somewhat sane individual, climate change is a problem facing the world as we know it, whether we like it or not. As far as government spending, and attention goes to this matter, I feel that it is fairly important for governments to take action with help of scientists to figure out alternative ways to go about our every day lives that might be conducive to our planet's climate. However I completely agree with Jake in the fact that the whole GREEN thing is just a trend, if not a fad, that is a ridiculous idea endorsed by many uninformed individuals. Also, I can't stand people like Al Gore who get the Nobel Peace Prize for his Global Warming POWERPOINT-like presentation. He won over an old lady who saved thousands of small children during the Holocaust, and has reconnected many of them with their families all these years later. Climate control should be a legitimate concern in our government, but not blown out of proportion by rich celebs and annoying politicians.


P.S. Jake, I also watched Earth the other night with my little brothers. Remember the part where the baby elephant and his mother got lost? Agh my heart was broken....until they rejoined with their heard of course.

PMiner said...

Climate change has happened, and will continue to happen. I believe that the government should create some funding and become involved with trying to prevent anything from getting worse, providing that we are humanly capable of controlling it. I mean come on people, lets face it... we are only human, and that means climate change along with every other issue in the world is going to happen whether we like it or not. There are several things we can do to reduce the effects and to slow it down, but it will still happen

K-Laz said...

If i could say what jon said and be done with it i would. Obviously i can't. But i completely agree with jon on the matter of yes government should be involved, but not too much. I don't mind seeing government action in ways that creat more energy efficient items. As long as it doesn't involve me moving out of my house into a bio dome, i'm all for the new technology. I can't agree more with jake and jons view on the "green" epidemic. I just think they're pushing it with this. Government involvement is a must, but theres a line that shouldn't be crossed.

j.polinski said...

Being a conservative individual, I do not believe the national government should be substantially involved in our every day lives. However, regarding climate change I believe the government should have a somewhat large role in addressing the climate change and have someone who actually knows what they're talking about inform us about it (not Al Gore).

MKlinka said...

But perhaps the government should support renewable energy for reasons other than the prevention of a global warming effect? Really, dependence on foreign oil can be nothing good. So how about, instead of simply using all the governments funds and turning an even larger debt, subsidies are offered to private sector enterprises. This would not only help to bolster the economy but it would allow the government to worry about other things. Global warming may not be an issue, but getting our oil from Russia and the Middle East is. To make matters worse, drilling in Alaska won't give us fuel independence, so we need to think of something else.

nsomers said...

I think that the government should be adressing climate change and I think its great that they are trying to pass a bill in the Senate. Global warming is happening and something needs to be done about it. I think the only effective way to make changes is for the government to be involved because they have the power to limit the amount green house gases we emit.

TyKant said...

The government should definitely be involved because they are the ones that can address it. The public can only do so much without having to worry about the punishments. The public needs to influence the government that they are in control and that they need to do whatever they can to protect the earth.

Brandon D said...

I also want to say that government needs to make laws and and regulations so that those who dont really care about our environment can not make it worse. It will be interesting to see how we tend to the issue as it becomes more mainstream.

M. Francis said...

It is simply not what the United States', nor any other single country, role to address climate change. Whether you believe in climate change or not, the United States federal government should not concern themselves with climate change. This is what the United Nations is for!
A clear majority of scientists have studied the earth's climate and have concluded that humans have dramatically changed the earth's climate. The United States should always look for more efficient ways travel and spend/create energy for the sake of progress, but not the WORLD'S PROBLEM. Clearly all nations should help this cause if any attempts should be made to "solve" this problem. But how do we "solve" this supposed problem??? Until scientists and the nations of this world can decide on a solution, nothing can or will be done. The United States should not be focused on this issue anyways, there is a clear economic struggle in this country and we are currently fighting around the globe.

Haley S said...

The government’s role in addressing climate change should be minimal. Whether or not the science behind climate change is “manufactured”, proposed laws and regulations will cause more harm than good due to the effect on our nation’s economy. Some of the regulations regarding conservation and environmental safety are causing businesses to hesitate to spend money. The focus on climate change can be giving government an excuse to justify more government control and regulation. There are more important and urgent issues for the government to be focusing on and funding. Terrorism, the national debt, and other issues involving the economic recession are far greater threats to our country than global warming.

Brittany Warnell said...

I believe that the government should have a role in the climate change. I like the idea of controlling green house gas emissions, because the government is really the only thing that can stop the use of too much carbon. The government should get the word out that these gasses need to be used sparingly. I think they should lower the unnecessary gas emissions while scientists work on finding replacements that are better for the climate.

Nick Berry said...

I think the government should have a small role addressing the climate change. I believe that the private sector should be taking care of the climate change by producing energy producing eco-friendly products. A way I do think the government should be involved is in giving tax breaks to companies that produce things such as solar panels and wind turbines. Today, these products are not economically smart for middle-class consumers, so not many people buy them. If government gives tax breaks to companies that produce these products, then costs will lower. With lower costs more ordinary citizens will buy solar panels and wind turbines to reduce carbon emissions.

Brandon Krawczyk said...

I think that the governments role should be limited to providing incentives for states and individuals to switch to clean and renewable energy to combat climate change, and to encouraging the planting of new trees and other plants that help to offset the net carbon output of america. putting new regulations in place to limit CO2 emissions could also go along with this but it kind of falls under providing new incentives.

Tony Lopez said...

I believe that governments around the world should have some role in addressing climate change. Granted one government helping to keep our world cleaner would be a big step but all of the governments in the world combined would drastically help our environment. Grants to help states create a environmental protection business of sorts would lead to a much cleaner environment, this would just be one way our government could step in and help the ecosystem. With a government push, many more communities would adopt eco-friendly ways to gather power and other essentials to a comfortable life. No matter what the government does or doesn't do, everyone should try and do their part in preserving the environment around them.