Science & Environment

‘It’s Called Summer’: GOP Brushes Off Record Heat Wave

Unless you’ve been residing underground or have a vested curiosity in turning a blind eye to actuality, you realize that local weather change has despatched temperatures hovering to harmful ranges across the planet this summer time.

Two world local weather organizations on Thursday confirmed that July is on monitor to be the single hottest month on record. It can also be seemingly the hottest monthlong stretch in 120,000 years. Nearly 200 million folks — 60% of the U.S. inhabitants — are at the moment beneath an excessive warmth or flood advisory.

But as regular, Republican local weather deniers are fast to dismiss the dire impacts.

“There is a very scientific word for this: It’s called summer,” Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.) advised HuffPost when asked concerning the warmth on Thursday. “It’s no hotter right now than it’s ever been. I’ve been in this heat all my life in July and August as a football coach. This world’s not heating up, come on.”

Tuberville coached school soccer earlier than getting into politics and has no obvious scientific background. Yet the lack of know-how within the subject doesn’t maintain him from confidently pooh-poohing the work of 1000’s of scientists around the globe. Last month, as a lot of the U.S. Northeast was blanketed in thick smoke from Canadian wildfires, Tuberville deployed an identical response: “We’ve had fires for all of our life, come on.”

Make no mistake, people have pushed the planet into uncharted territory. Devastating warmth waves have plagued the U.S., Europe and Asia in latest weeks. The extent of sea ice surrounding Antarctica is at an all-time low. Sea floor temperatures within the North Atlantic are at a record high. In the Florida Keys, scorching tub-level marine temperatures have triggered widespread coral bleaching, and scientists have scrambled in latest days to rescue a whole lot of corals earlier than they perish.

During a speech Thursday concerning the excessive warmth gripping the U.S., President Joe Biden stated the impacts of worldwide local weather change are simple.

“I don’t know anybody who honestly believes climate change is not a serious problem,” he stated.

There are, in reality, loads.

“Only in Washington will they try to find an excuse to take something that’s been going on for hundreds of years … to promote their crazy left agenda,” House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.) advised reporter Pablo Manríquez in The New Republic this week when asked concerning the link between human-induced world warming and the crushing warmth.

“Southern Louisiana, it’s always hot,” Scalise added. “Thank God for air conditioning.”

Last month, Senate Republicans heard from a fossil fuel advocate at a weekly closed-door assembly who argued that the advantages of utilizing fossil fuels outweigh the harms. GOP senators representing states reliant on oil and gasoline industries ate up his speech, carrying his signed guide again to their places of work.

“It’s hot for sure, but we also know that weather cycles,” Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) stated. “What we do know about them is they’ve been going on for a long time. How much we can impact them — that’s the question. I doubt we can.”

Asked if excessive warmth is linked to local weather change, Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) stated: “I don’t think anybody knows.”

Other Republicans acknowledged that the local weather could also be altering because of human exercise. But they argued that efforts to cut back carbon dioxide emissions within the West would show ineffective so long as large emitters like China fail to behave.

“You can plausibly say that the increased amount of carbon in the atmosphere is trapping heat,” stated Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.). “All we’re talking about is how to reduce that. Whatever the U.S. does is going to be marginal as long as China continues to emit.”

On Capitol Hill, the GOP is advancing an appropriations invoice that will intestine funding for federal environmental businesses, mandate extra oil and gasoline lease gross sales each onshore and offshore, torpedo protections for wild animals, and rescind greater than $9 billion supplied by the Inflation Reduction Act, President Joe Biden’s signature local weather legislation that Democrats handed final yr.

Right-wing teams not too long ago crafted a 920-page “battle plan” — dubbed Project 2025 — to information a future Republican administration in dismantling environmental rules and stymying federal local weather motion.

Meanwhile, the Republican Party is attacking the Biden administration’s effort to make house home equipment, including air conditioners and dishwashers, extra environment friendly. Fox News and different right-wing media have dutifully dubbed the federal effort as Biden’s “war on appliances.”

Increasing the manufacturing of planet-warming fossil fuels, inevitably driving temperatures even larger, after which escaping that warmth with an inefficient air conditioner — that’s the longer term the GOP is preventing for.

Democrats stated the historic clear power investments they handed final yr are already making an impression, not solely in lowering emissions but in addition in altering minds in purple states with new inexperienced power jobs and the wave of manufacturing.

“There’s plenty of no-nothingism in this town now,” Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) stated. “It’s perfectly acceptable in certain circles to ignore the reality of the world as it is, and I just think that’s really dangerous.”

“We’re a country that’s flourished because for a long time, we’ve believed in science and we’ve followed facts,” Heinrich continued. “Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts.”

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