Congratulations to Greenpeace, which showed yesterday what a small group of protesters can accomplish, when they’ve got some imagination. Three activists dropped a large banner from the top of Mount Rushmore, helped by eight other activists working nearby. The banner read: America Honors Leaders, Not Politicians, Stop Global Warming, and showed Barack Obama’s face at the size it would appear if it were to be carved on Mount Rushmore.
Their point was that the American Clean Energy and Security Act, the climate legislation passed by the House of Representatives, isn’t enough to fight escalating climate change, and in many ways goes in the wrong direction. The bill would reduce greenhouse gas emissions at a rate far too slow to deal with even the more conservative projections of climate effects over the next few generations. Climate change is already costing us billions of dollars every year, but the Democrats’ bill, supported by President Obama, postpones strong action until decades from now – decades too late. The legislation even encourages the construction of new coal burning electric power plants.
Greenpeace, explaining its protest, writes,
“The worst part about this weak legislation is that it will not only keep America heading towards a full-speed, head-on collision with runaway climate change, but it will provide the cover for other developed countries to shirk their obligations to reduce emissions as well. President Obama needs a strong, science-based piece of legislation so that he can go to Copenhagen in December, when the next round of UN climate talks are scheduled to take place, and push for what science demands: 25 to 40% cuts in emissions below 1990 levels by 2020, and 80 to 95% cuts by 2050. Anything less and we’re headed for disaster.”