Aug 7, 2010

Green Party: Environmental Policy is National Defense Policy

A press release from the Green Party:
WASHINGTON, DC -- Green Party leaders and candidates called for national defense against global warming, with a demand that Congress cut military spending drastically and transfer the money to efforts to stem the impending climate change catastrophe.

"We need a new kind of national defense -- defense against catastrophic climate change," said Alfred Molison, Green Party candidate for City Council (District C) in Houston, Texas, the center of the American oil industry ( "The White House and Congress keep increasing military funding, for defense contractors and for the unending, unwinnable wars in Iraq and Afghanistan-Pakistan. What we need to do is shift that money to investment in renewable noncarbon-based energy technology, creation of millions of green jobs, public transportation to replace car traffic, retrofitting of buildings, and other measures to reduce greenhouse emissions. If we don't cut these emissions drastically right now, the resulting damage and breakdown of security will be far worse than anything a terrorist can inflict on America."

"Life as we know it cannot survive business as usual. Defeating global climate change requires more than a set of policy recommendations or schemes like 'cap and trade' emissions trading," added Gloria Mattera, Green candidate for LieutenantGovernor of New York State (

Green leaders pointed to key developments in recent months:

The US Senate's failure to pass the Climate Change bill in July, even after numerous concessions to corporate polluters: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced that he would not try to bring a compromise bill to the Senate floor.

"Democrats and Republicans cannot be trusted to take the minimal necessary steps to curb global warming," said Laura Wells, Green Party Candidate for Governor of California ( "America's only hope for concrete action is a new kind of politics, in which candidates who reject corporate influence replace Democrats and Republicans in office. The media continue to portray politics as a permanent contest between the two established parties. But people are tired of seeing so little difference between them, since both Democrats and Republicans kowtow to the same corporate interests. The Green Party represents a real difference, and can advance real solutions, because it doesn't take corporate donations."

Reports of record-breaking temperatures and freak weather occurrences around the globe ("2000-2009 Marked Warmest Decade on Record," Democracy Now!, July 29,, along with the news that 97 percent of scientists recognize that climate change is real and is caused by human activity ("Report: 97 percent of scientists say man-made climate change is real," Science Fair, June 22,

Evidence that corporate energy lobbies are calling the shots on major US policies: (1) Continued revelations, in the wake of the Gulf oil spill, that government regulatory agencies are under the influence of corporations that they are required by law to oversee; (2) Bipartisan support for continued offshore drilling, mountaintop removal mining, hydraulic fracturing ('fracking'), 'clean coal', nuclear plants, and other dangerous, destructive energy sources, while rejecting serious, committed, and immediate plans to expand and diversify our energy portfolio as well as implement high speed, low-cost public transportation and carbon taxes; (3) President Obama's plan to keep 50,000 US troops in Iraq, and delayed withdrawal of combat troops elsewhere, to protect multi-national interests, which means guaranteeing access to oil resources for western energy companies and their bankers.

"Despite recent assurances that the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has been contained, Americans should see the disaster as only the latest warning about the amount of damage that corporate reckless and shortsightedness can cause. The real issue is not so-called energy independence and ending our reliance on foreign oil. We need a line of defense against the long-range threat posed by an addiction to nonrenewable fossil fuel energy in a post-peak era, regardless of where it comes from. Offshore drilling and mountaintop removal mining must be shut down soon, not only because of the immediate danger of continuing disasters but the sheer fact that these polluting forms of energy are not sustainable for America's primary interests, its families and communities," said Jesse Johnson, West Virginia Mountain Party candidate in the special election for the late Robert C. Byrd's US Senate seat.

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