San Francisco, Aug 13, 2010
Congressman Ed Markey, Democrat from Mass., Chairman of the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, and co-author of the Waxman-Markey bill which passed in the House but never made it through the Senate, spoke at the Commonwealth Club’s Climate One in San Francisco. He remains optimistic about the eventual passage of a comprehensive climate change bill, anticipating a growing wave of support coming from the emerging ‘green generation’.
Markey strongly urged Californians to defeat the upcoming proposition 23, placed on the ballot by two Texas oil companies aimed at turning back SB32, California’s clean energy law.
“You cannot lose this issue out here. It’s an imperative for you to beat back these two Texas oil companies. They are only interested in the short term profitability of their shareholders. They are not interested in the creation of renewable energy jobs here in California, of saving the planet, of backing out of imported oil.”
Excerpts: “And I think, in the end, we have a responsibility to the rest of the world. Most of the CO2 is red white and blue which is up there. You cannot preach temperance form a bar stool. You cannot tell China and India that you should stop, if the countries, along with the EU, that are most responsible for the creation of the problem, continue with the very same activities. So we need to have the moral and political platform from which to provide the leadership to the rest of the world, and the alternative technologies that can be developed in those countries, deployed in those countries, which would substitute for the pathway which the United States went down.”
“I think the rest of the world would respond if we did take that leadership role. I think that the whole world wants the US and China to partner in the twenty first century, but until we begin to lead we should have no expectations that China is going to follow. ”
“In the same way that the young people, the freedom riders went South, in the same way that the young women, the suffragettes rose up, so to the green generation is arriving, as voters and as powerful forces inside the community who are going to demand this change.”
“And while we might start later and at a lower level than you like, we can intensify in the later years in a way that avoids the worst consequences if we haven’t already reached a tipping point, which is my hope, then we still have time to save the planet.”
The first half hour of the Markey talk can be seen on the video posted by climate one.
Report by James George