The U.S. is rapidly approaching one million confirmed cases of the virus and has now passed 50,000 deaths (the most in the world). In the face of this, Donald Trump is pushing untested drugs, tweeting Liberate states with protesters advocating for premature lifting of shelter orders, telling us the virus might disappear this coming winter, even though medical experts are warning that we should be prepared for a COVID-19 winter surge. And, suggesting that people could inject disinfectants and use ultraviolet rays internally to combat the virus. (Debunked as dangerous by both medical science and disinfectant companies.)
If this isn’t enough to make you vote for former Vice-President Biden in November, who has promised to have science lead us to the other side of this pandemic, think about climate change. As pointed out in my column, The Lessons of Coronavirus, COVID-19, like Ebola is a virus that has jumped from animals to humans because our warming climate has pushed animals into closer contact with humans. According to climate scientists, as our planet continues to warm, we can expect more novel diseases to begin to attack us.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that climate change is and will continue to cause more than 250,000 deaths a year as the result of extreme weather conditions, disease transmissions (like Ebola and COVID-19), polluted water-related disease, and malnutrition.
Joe Biden would put us back in the leadership position of the Paris Climate Accords, which Trump took us out of. He would ensure that the federal government does everything possible to reduce our greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
Donald Trump is a climate denier who has instructed his environmental agencies to do everything possible to increase greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Fossil fuels are at the heart of the climate threat. If we don’t transition from a fossil fuel economy to a renewable energy one, we will inevitably slide further toward the climate change tipping point, from which there is no coming back.
During this time of the virus, when attention is turned away from federal agency rule making, the Trump administration is quietly doing everything possible to further more oil and gas development thereby creating more GHG emissions, and more global warming. The Interior Department is working to expand fossil fuel development on public lands, including the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management offered 78 million acres for lease for more offshore oil development in the Gulf of Mexico. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is altering its rule-making process in favor of the fossil-fuel industry. The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is reviewing rules to ensure that the Trump EPA’s “Secret Science” rule, which can disavow science in rule making, stays in place. Trump is strongly considering a bailout package for U.S. oil and natural gas companies, as a result of dropping fuel prices caused by the virus.
As far back as 1986 Senator Biden introduced a climate change bill (The Global Climate Protection Act) which called for an EPA national policy on climate change. He has supported higher fuel efficiency standards for motor vehicles, caps on GHG emissions, and regulations on coal-fired power plant emissions.
Regardless of whether you are a progressive, moderate or conservative, if you believe in science, the choice between Biden and Trump has to be obvious. One man, Biden, sees climate change as an existential threat and would mobilize the federal bureaucracy to protect us from infections like COVID-19. The other, Trump, is chomping at the bit to open up an infected, contagious economy and doesn’t even see climate change, much less the threat it poses to humanity.
Come this November, we will literally be voting on life and death policies. The choice is ours.