This Week In Climate (In)Action

THIS WEEK IN CLIMATE (IN)ACTION – December 7th, 2018

Dec 7, 2018



“The truth is that most prominent climate deniers are basically paid to take that position, receiving large amounts of money from fossil-fuel companies. But after the release of the recent National Climate Assessment detailing the damage we can expect from global warming, a parade of Republicans went on TV to declare that scientists were only saying these things ‘for the money.’ Projection much?”

-New York Times opinion columnist Paul Krugman in a piece he wrote this week showing the ways climate denial has long reflected a Trumpian moral attitude.


“He published an op-ed ON EARTH DAY praising the benefits of fossil fuels.”

-Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, urging his Senate colleagues via twitter to oppose Bernard McNamee’s confirmation to serve on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.





Roll Call: How Climate Cause Could Boost Future Democrats

ThinkProgress: Rohrabacher’s climate denial helped swing conservative California district, survey shows

Missoula Current: Post-election poll: Public lands issue pushed U.S. Senate race in Tester’s favor

E&E News: Former LCV Staffer to lead Democratic Senate Committee

Politico: Cortez Masto taps chief of staff Fairchild as DSCC executive director

Montana Public Radio: Public Lands Tipped Montana Senate Election In Tester’s Favor, Green Groups Say

E&E News: AGU angers researchers by giving award to GOP senator




LCV’s state affiliates are hard at work protecting the environment and fighting climate change in the states. Here’s what people are reading across the country:


Public News Service (MT): MT Groups Push for Land & Water Conservation Fund in Lame-Duck Congress

Florida Politics (FL): Takeaways from Tallahassee — New mayor, new style

Daily Press (VA): Virginia conservationists blast approval of seismic testing for oil, gas in Atlantic

Michigan Radio (MI): Environmental groups call for movement on PFAS bills, lawmakers say they need more time

CBS Newschannel 3 (MI): Bill introduced to create an enforceable drinking water standard in Michigan

MLive (MI): Activists urge lawmakers to pass PFAS drinking water standards before year’s end




CLIMATE ISSUES PROVEN TO WIN: As we continue to learn more and more about what helped candidates find success in the midterms, one thing has become clear: localized environmental issues move voters, and those running in 2020 can learn from these results. LCV Victory Fund, EDF Action, and Global Strategy Group released new research this week that shows how messaging about local environmental issues won over voters in three battleground races: Montana Senate, New Jersey’s 3rd Congressional District, and California’s 48th Congressional District.


MONTANA: Post-election polling showed that LCV Victory Fund and allied group’s ads on Matt Rosendale’s bad public lands record moved voters. Ninety-three percent of Montana voters remembered this message, and 82 percent of Senator Jon Tester voters said it was a convincing reason to vote against Rosendale.


NEW JERSEY 3RD: LCV Victory Fund and EDF Action conducted pre-election polling that suggested the health impacts of Congressman Tom MacArthur’s anti-environmental voting record would be effective. Our post-election poll showed this was true — environmental and health concerns convinced moderates in the district to support Congressman-elect Andy Kim.


CALIFORNIA 48TH: More than two-thirds of California voters (and 71 percent of swing voters) remember seeing LCV Victory Fund and Independence USA PAC’s ads that highlighted outgoing Congressman Dana Rohrabacher’s climate denial and opposition to fighting climate change. Importantly, this poll shows that moderates and nonpartisans rated these messages as some of the most convincing reasons for voting against him.


BOLD CALL FOR ACTION: On Friday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer made a powerful call for any infrastructure bill to address the climate crisis by investing in clean energy and helping communities adapt to climate change.


OUR RESPONSE: From LCV President Gene Karpinski: “Senator Schumer is right: a strong infrastructure package is an opportunity to make a significant down payment on transitioning to a clean energy economy that generates millions of family-sustaining jobs, while helping communities prepare for the devastating climate impacts many are already experiencing. Voters across the country just sent a loud and clear message that they want our elected officials to act on climate, and we urge Congress and the Trump administration to do just that. Thanks Senator Schumer for making a clarion call to seize this opportunity to help build our clean energy future.”  


SORE LOSERS: On Election Night, the people of Michigan and Wisconsin made it clear that they want to move toward clean energy by electing new pro-environment executives in each state. However, lawmakers in the lame duck sessions are attempting to limit power of their pro-environment Governors-elect, which is out of step with the public they serve. These lawmakers are trying to push through measures to diminish the power of the attorney general, limit the role scientists play in environmental decisions, restrict voting rights, and reduce checks and balances.


LANDS IN LIMBO: More than two months after Congress allowed the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) to expire, we’re not giving up. Today LCV launched $50,000 in digital ads pressuring members to permanently reauthorize and fully fund our nation’s best parks program before the end of the year. The ads focus on Representatives Rob Bishop (UT-01), Ken Calvert (CA-42) and Paul Ryan (WI-01), as well as Senators Steve Daines (MT), Cory Gardner (CO) and Lisa Murkowski (AK).


LEADERSHIP GAP: Over the weekend, the G20 meeting closed and one of the most notable outcomes was a pledge to fight climate change. Nineteen of the world leaders present took the pledge. Climate science denier Trump was the lone hold-out on the pledge and reiterated his destructive decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement.


DANGEROUS RHETORIC LEADS TO…real life-threatening harms. A new study out this week from the World Health Organization details the public health benefits of taking action on climate change. Currently, the drivers of climate change lead to 7 million deaths worldwide, according to the report. The good news: taking pro-environment action can save lives by creating better air quality.


COAL FOR THE HOLIDAYS: Former coal lobbyist and acting administrator of the EPA Andrew Wheeler announced that he will try to roll back an important climate change regulation in order to make it easier to build new coal plants. The current law requires new coal plants to be retrofitted with carbon capture and storage technology, designed to mitigate the impact on our clear air, and this would reverse that progress.


COMING NEXT WEEK: The EPA is poised to gut clean water protections for millions of people as soon as Tuesday, according to a report from E&E News. The upcoming “Dirty Water Rule” is expected to jeopardize our health and environment by making our waterways more vulnerable to pollution — while polluters get a free pass. We need to do more to protect our water, not less.


OFF THE HOOK: By resigning, former EPA chief Scott Pruitt has seemingly been able to avoid any potential repercussions for his numerous ethical scandals. Pruitt, who was under investigation by the Inspector General, should face consequences for his actions.


ACCELERATING DISASTER: This week, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said that the Trump administration plans to roll back subsidies for auto manufacturers who make cleaner, electric cars as well as subsidies for other renewable energy sources. This dangerous decision will impact the air we breathe and our overall public health.





December 21 – Government funding deadline


January 3 – New Congress begins