Can Conservatives Think Clearly on Climate?

October 14, 2017

Debbie Dooley, above, is a Tea Party activist -specifically, she is a special kind of “Green Tea Party” activist, who gets climate change, and works for renewable solutions with a free market perspective. And she makes some good points.
I really want to believe that conservatives care, or are even capable of caring, about air, water, the planet, or even about their own children.

But, geez – cmon guys.

Below, Conservative conclave in DC seeks to educate on renewable energy.


When President Donald Trump announced he would withdraw the United States from the Paris climate agreement, it was a major blow to the renewable energy industry because of the growing market in America. Now the Trump administration is also making good on his campaign promise to revitalize coal country, as the Environmental Protection Agency is set to repeal the Obama-era Clean Power Plan, a limit set to curb greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired power plants.

With these orders, alternative energy may see slower growth or receive less federal funding. But one group of conservatives wants to make a case for clean energy.

On October 5, the Christian Coalition and the Young Conservatives for Energy Reform (YC4ER) hosted the third annual Conservative Clean Energy Summit in Washington D.C. More than 300 conservatives from across the nation met with industry leaders, activists, businesses and members of Congress to send a message to everyone in the energy debate.

“Clean energy isn’t a left or right issue. It’s an American issue,” said Angel Garcia, the national outreach director for the YC4ER. “We need leaders out there to explain that this is something that will make America better, stronger and independent.”

Coming together as conservatives for clean energy doesn’t exactly separate them from the larger dialogue, Garcia said. It just provides more perspectives and additional arguments in support of renewables. Key themes shared throughout the summit included “home-grown” energy, job growth and national security.

Energy independence was one of Trump’s keynotes during his presidential campaign. However, what he had in mind was producing more coal, oil and gas in the United States instead of relying on renewable energy or foreign sources of fossil fuels. The summit speakers reiterated several times that the nation’s energy independence won’t succeed by using fossil fuels.

“There’s a maximum need on what we can always provide, and the U.S. is one of the greatest consumers of energy,” Senator Mike Rounds, R-South Dakota, said in his speech. “Clean energy is pragmatic and consistent.”

Last year, the solar industry employed 200,000 more individuals than the coal industry, and wind reached over 100,000 jobs.

Data from the Solar Energy Industries Association’s annual report showed fortune 500 companies such as Target, Apple and Costco are the top-10 corporate solar users, and there are now more than 9,000 solar businesses in America. According to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), the U.S. is the leading producer of wind energy in the world. With over 99 percent of all wind farms on private land, wind energy projects are now giving more than $245 million a year to American landowners, AWEA reported last year.

Mariah Bastin, a member of the Washington D.C. Young Republicans, said she has seen this job influx in action. Bastin’s father grew up on a farm in Kansas and understood that money was often tight for agricultural communities. After her father retired a few years ago, the Bastin family moved to Colorado and saw sophisticated wind turbines popping up on farmland. Local farmers were actually able to make ends meet by selling wind power on their property. Because of this cooperation, wind energy in Colorado has increased from 1.5 percent to 17.3 percent since 2005 and accounted for three-quarters of all renewables used in the state in 2015 alone.

Video below touches on Green Tea Party activism for renewables.


7 Responses to “Can Conservatives Think Clearly on Climate?”

  1. J4Zonian Says:


    Come onnnnn.

    Nixon did not create the EPA. Congress did, at the long and loud insistence of scientists and left wing activists. Reagan believed “Man” had the right to use nature, treating nature like an object and not a community of beings

    CO2 is not what kills people in a garage. CO is.

    It might help to try to convince the delusional moron set to allow clean safe renewable energy to happen by not telling them why they’re doing it, with “freedom” reasons and competition. But there are so many things wrong with that it’s impossible to list them all. Numbers one, two, and three are that you’re reinforcing conservative frames and that will drive the country, and those people especially, FURTHER to the right (hard to imagine, yes, but that’s where we’re going because fascism is an addiction, and reinforcing their frames will make it go faster).

    Also, it won’t get the desired result for the most part because it will encourage people to allow renewables to slowly creep up over the next half century and to avoid utterly catastrophic climate change we need to eliminate 90% of fossil fuel use in the next 8 years or less. Freedom of choice sounds suspiciously like all of the above, and it gives an excuse to continue pushing, and increasing subsidies for, fossil and fissile fuels that can’t even compete in the alleged marketplace, let alone the marketplace of ideas and morals.

  2. J4Zonian Says:

    “Clean energy isn’t a left or right issue. It’s an American issue,”

    Always a bogus argument. Politics is many things; one thing it is the art of deciding who gets what.

    Everything is political

    and denying that something is political is a way of saying in (easily breakable) code that one side is blocking action on it for crazy reasons and the person saying “it’s not political” wishes it weren’t, so everyone would agree with him on it. The person wishes the crazy party weren’t being crazy, which wishing won’t help with. (Psychotherapy is good for that.) I’ve heard this said about almost every political issue since the Republicans actually did go crazy and began blocking everything rational, and the corporate duopoly moved together so far to the right that it opposes almost everything the majority of people in the US want. (except when almost everybody gets projectively bloodthirsty together and wants to kill someone(s).

    • lesliegraham1 Says:

      Not everything is political.
      Basic physics doesn’t give a damn who you vote for.
      You can argue about it all decade long and no matter what you decide the Earth will continue warming if you continue adding heat trapping gases to the atmosphere.

      • Jerry Falwel Says:

        It is political to claim something about CO2 that the physics does not support. Take CO2 claims that is sole cause of the current warmup. How can you explain the medieval warm period, the little ice age, the previous warm period 4500 years ago when there is no data to show CO2 caused a warmup or lack of CO2 a cool down. CO2 was at of below 280 ppm during the warmup and cool down. Ice core studies vary in the lag time for the increase in CO2 at the end of the last ice age. 8000 to 200 year lag depending on the study. Even at the low end something caused the world to warm and than the CO2 rose. Some studies make the claim that the southern hemisphere warmed and that caused the northern hemisphere to warm which begs the question of how did the southern hemisphere warm. That leaves the sun as the actual warmer and cooler of the world. Some studies show the sun warming for the last few hundred years which would explain the warm up out of the little ice age. NASA models show changes in earths tilt and orbit are currently warming the world 5 or 6 percent more than it would otherwise be. If you throw in a sun which is not steady state the ice ages and warm periods are explained. The hard part is getting data on the solar output back before satellites and modern record keeping. if we were on the moon data might be available as the moons surface has not been changed in billions of years except for the rain of dust and the occasional larger rock.

      • Jerry Falwel Says:

        Go run MODTRAN, doubling the CO2 from today adds 0.67F it you use the middle course inputs. The increase from 280 PPM is less than that. Since the temperature swing from the medieval warm period to the little ice age low to today is more than either, something is either wrong with the model or with the claims CO2 is the major source of warming.

      • J4Zonian Says:

        Sorry but your 2nd statement is meaningless, and the last is rather confused, going out of its way to point out the political decisions involved and then deny that they’re political decisions. Of course everything is political. What to do about physics, chemistry and ecology is political. Whether and how to stop warming the Earth are political decisions. If politics is the art of deciding who gets what, it’s a political decision to move society’s resources from fossil and fissile fuels to clean safe renewable energy sources, to transform chemical industrial agriculture to small-scale low meat organic permaculture; it will take a lot of political decisions in countries both developing and overdeveloped to will allow the Earth to be reforested.

        Of course all politics is really psychological reality writ onto the context of ecological reality with a long lead up of historical reality.

  3. Jerry Falwel Says:

    Are you referring to MODTRAN? That is a CO2 tool to measure the radiation differences at various CO2 levels, that can be used to measure warming.

    You use psychological reality, historical reality and ecological reality buss words without apparently understanding anything of the physics or history, I will leave the first to the psychologists.

    Here is one graft of both historical and ecological realty you may not have considered

    You notice all the data is from NOAA and the government data sources.

    If you were talking about getting rid of pollution than we would be on the same page. I grew up in LA where the air was so polluted you cried when going downtown. That has been mostly fixed without ending the car culture or fuel burning cars. China could do the same thing for cars, its problems are actually from burning coal in the home and factories for power and heat. All that haze is from coal burning. China is going nuclear for most of its power. When it comes of psychological reality, using buss words solar, electric cars is very PC, in the markets China sells to and the communist party bigwigs are very good at using psycho babble to sell their message which is buy from us.

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