Ray of sunshine as Obama indicates climate change to come back on the agenda
- 30 April 2012
NEW YORK: It may not have been via traditional media but US President Barack Obama has indicated that climate change and clean energy might just get back on the political agenda as we head towards the Presidential Election this November.
In an interview in this month’s Rolling Stone magazine, he admitted that the financial crisis has made it easier for those opposed to action on climate change to garner support but said that this would change.
“I suspect that over the next six months, this is going to be a debate that will become part of the campaign, and I will be very clear in voicing my belief that we’re going to have to take further steps to deal with climate change in a serious way,” the President told the music magazine.
The President made the point that he will advocate “that there’s a way to do it [address climate change] that is entirely compatible with strong economic growth and job creation.”
“Taking steps, for example, to retrofit buildings all across America with existing technologies, will reduce our power usage by 15 or 20%. That’s an achievable goal, and we should be getting started now.”
His renewed focus on climate change was supported by his much heralded appearance on the popular Late Night with Jimmy Fallon TV show on Tuesday, April 24. When asked by the comedian if there was one magical thing he could just pass by clicking his fingers that would change the world, what would it be: President Obama identified clean energy. He said: “We have to make sure that we’re investing in the clean energy sources of the future - solar, wind, biofuels. We’re still subsidizing the oil industry when they are making billions and for us to take some of that money and invest in electric cars, investing in new sources of fuel that is good for the planet. It helps us deal with climate change, its good for our economy.”
Amy Davidsen, US Director, The Climate Group, welcomed the new focus the President has placed on climate change. “There is no doubt that over the last few years it has been tough to get climate change on the agenda in Washington. But it needs to be. These comments by the President are welcome but we need to ensure that climate change and clean energy are priority issues for the campaign and, more importantly, part of the legislative program for the next Congress and whoever is President.
“Now is the time for strong and clear voices for the Clean Revolution and the benefits it will offer all Americans to ensure we get the legislative leadership and action we need.”
Read more about our Clean Revolution Campaign.