I know, the title sounds like something out of a movie or religion starring Tom Cruise. I wish that were the case but, unfortunately, it’s an accurate description of the reality we all woke up to this morning. We are in the middle of a battle for our planet’s survival, whether we know it or not.
I know that many, if not most, of you are already actively working to protect the environment and fight climate change. But I’m afraid things are much worse than most of us could have imagined even a few weeks ago.
Just to be clear, I’m not exaggerating and this isn’t some spilt-milk whining over election results.
I’m simply reporting that if we don’t band together, we will not be able to defeat this new and greatest threat to our planet, namely the complete takeover of the federal government by corporations that intend to profit from fossil fuels until the last of us stops breathing.
The only rivals to this new threat’s top spot on the planetary death scale are an impact by a big meteorite and a full-blown nuclear war. Fortunately, Trump only controls two of the ways the Earth could end (No button for a meteorite).
A few days ago, the president-elect’s team put up a new website laying out, among other things, his energy policy. You can find the website at greatagain.gov.
I know what follows is a long quote, but I didn’t want to merely summarize what we are in for in the coming years. Every American should read the Trump Administration’s stated energy agenda for themselves.
“Rather than continuing the current path to undermine and block America’s fossil fuel producers, the Trump Administration will encourage the production of these resources by opening onshore and offshore leasing on federal lands and waters. We will streamline the permitting process for all energy projects, including the billions of dollars in projects held up by President Obama, and rescind the job-destroying executive actions under his Administration.
“We will end the war on coal, and rescind the coal mining lease moratorium, the excessive Interior Department stream rule, and conduct a top-down review of all anti-coal regulations issued by the Obama Administration.
“We will eliminate the highly invasive ‘Waters of the US’ rule, and scrap the $5 trillion dollar Obama-Clinton Climate Action Plan and the Clean Power Plan and prevent these unilateral plans from increasing monthly electric bills by double-digits without any measurable effect on Earth’s climate.
“Energy is the lifeblood of modern society. It is the industry that fuels all other industries. We will lift the restrictions on American energy, and allow this wealth to pour into our communities. It’s all upside: more jobs, more revenues, more wealth, higher wages, and lower energy prices.”
As of this writing, Trump’s choice for Secretary of State is ExxonMobile CEO Rex Tillerson.
His choice for head of the EPA is Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruit, a climate-change-denying bagman for Trump’s top energy adviser, Harold Hamm, CEO of Oklahoma city-based Continental Resources, a company best known for it’s holdings in North Dakota’s Bakken Shale.
Trump’s choice to lead the Interior Department is Montana Republican Rep. Ryan Zinke who has long advocated for more oil and gas extraction and mining on public lands. Zinke has also flip-flopped a number of times on whether such lands should be sold off or turned over to the states. And like everyone on this list, he is skeptical about climate change.
And lastly, former Texas Governor Rick Perry — who never met a hydrocarbon he didn’t like — is Trump’s nominee for Energy Secretary.
At this point, I’m not sure what to say. I can assure all of you that Boulder Weekly will do its best to cover this environmental travesty not only by being a watchdog over government but also by reporting on the people putting their lives on the line to stop this madness.
While I can’t imagine all the trials and tribulations the near-term future holds, I can say honestly I believe that when the history of this time is written, the election of Donald Trump will be viewed as the pivotal event that turned the tide against global warming and saved the planet. You read that right.
I am either correct that Trump’s insane assault on the environment will so motivate and unify the world against the continued use of fossil fuels as to hasten their demise as an energy source and thereby save the Earth, or there won’t be a future from which to reflect on our self-inflicted mass extinction.
Just remember, we are all in this together. Like Standing Rock, it won’t be easy and the hardest part is yet to come, but in the end…
Only you can write what comes next.