Nary a peep about climate in final Obama McCain debate

October 16, 2008 at 3:42 am | Posted in Climate change, Environment, Global warming | Leave a comment
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“I am convinced that climate change, and what we do about it, will define us, our era, and ultimately the global legacy we leave for future generations,”

~ Ban Ki-moon told more than 80 national leaders in the domed General Assembly chamber on 24 September 2007

Fast forward to today’s NYT article, McCain Presses Obama in Final Debate, which reports:

The debate touched on a wide variety of issues, including abortion, judicial appointments, trade and climate change as well as the economy, with the candidates often making clear the deep differences between them.

I just watched the debate on FOX News and heard McCain take credit for taking the lead on climate change in this way:


MCCAIN: OK. But it’s very clear that I have disagreed with the Bush administration. I have disagreed with leaders of my own party. I’ve got the scars to prove it.

Whether it be bringing climate change to the floor of the Senate for the first time.


and the only other part where climate change was ‘touched on’ is:


SCHIEFFER: Let’s go to … let’s go to a new topic. We’re running a little behind.

Let’s talk about energy and climate control. Every president since Nixon has said what both of you …

MCCAIN: Climate change.

SCHIEFFER: Climate change, yes … has said what both of you have said, and, that is, we must reduce our dependence on foreign oil.

That’s it!

Apart from a passing mention of clean coal by Obama, there was nothing on the importance of reducing carbon emissions, no talk about cap and trade, even though energy efficiency was discussed.  It would have been easy to have slipped in a few positive remarks—forward-looking statements reflecting a degree of climate awareness—highlighting the benefits of moving to a greener economy for reasons other than improving America’s energy independence and its economy, usually expressed as getting off ‘foreign oil imports’ and creating jobs.

So much for “Let’s talk about energy and climate control (sic).”

And so much for NYT reporting “The debate touched on a wide variety of issues, including … climate change …”

More on these diminishing returns at Grist in Talking points of no return.



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