In the face of looming climate catastrophe, the tired denialism tropes of years past just seem silly. Particularly ridiculous are law professor Richard Epstein’s claims that increased atmospheric carbon dioxide is not linked to worldwide warming and that Nevada’s economy is threatened by embracing renewable energy (“Magical green thinking,” Sunday Review-Journal).
Today almost everyone understands that the climate crisis threatens our health, food, water, infrastructure and economy. The Trump administration knows, as evidenced by publications of the EPA, NASA and the National Climate Assessment. So do major oil companies, the U.S. military, venture capitalists, the insurance industry, the libertarian Niskanen Center, numerous faith organizations, more than 97 percent of scientists, nearly eight in 10 Southern Nevadans and at least 70 percent of Republicans under age 40.
By acting now in a bipartisan way, we can still avoid the severe economic pain of catastrophic climate effects. Nevada legislators recognized job opportunities last session with their unanimous bipartisan support for Senate Bill 358, mandating a strong new clean energy standard. Carbon pricing, the single most powerful measure to effect a clean energy transition, is supported by more than 3,000 economists, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, Business Climate Leaders and others across the political spectrum.
It’s time to publish voices from across the political spectrum who acknowledge scientific fact and have ideas for solutions.