|Bernie Sanders on the campaign trail. Photo credit: Phil Roeder via Flickr.|
By Anders Lorenzen
Just days before the crucial New Hampshire Primary, the outsider for the Democratic Party Presidential nomination, Bernie Sanders, who describes himself as a democratic socialist, has attacked Republican climate deniers and politicians who are bought with fossil fuel money.
In a fiercely contested debate with frontrunner Hillary Clinton, Sanders furiously stated: “Climate change is real. Climate change is caused by human activity”. He then went on to attack the Republican party for their stance on this issue, and notes they have neglected to mention the issue: “Are the Republican candidates dummies? No … We disagree, to be sure, but they don’t go around attacking cancer researchers. … How does it happen that on this issue they deny science?”
We then received a Sanders trademark blasting the fossil fuel industry for buying political influence, an area he has campaigned on with author and founder of 350.org, Bill McKibben, stating: “It’s about money. The Koch brothers and the fossil fuel industry is just one example of the corrupting impact that campaign money plays in our public policy.”
Sanders said that what is needed is nothing less than an energy revolution: “We don’t look at our part of the world as having great solar exposure but actually we are not that different than Germany, we can do it. The cost of solar panels is plummeting … I think climate change is one of the great crises facing our planet and we have got to be extremely, extremely aggressive in taking on the fossil fuel industry and transforming our energy.”
The Senator from Vermont, says we don’t have to look far to see the impacts of climate of change, stating even New England is impacted (both Vermont and New Hampshire are in New England): “By the end of this century this planet could be five to ten degrees warmer than it is today. Vermont and New Hampshire could have climates that are similar to Georgia.”
“And we all know what that means. It means more floods, more droughts, more rising sea levels, the acidification of oceans, … it means more international conflict as people fight over limited natural resources. That’s what we are looking at and that is a tragedy.”
If elected, Sanders says he will reach out internationally to deal with climate change saying he will work with China and Russia. Days later Sanders convincingly claimed victory in the New Hampshire Primary, but nationally he is still some distance behind Clinton. This stance on climate change could be a rallying cry to his cause, with the issue so far having almost been ignored by debate moderators.
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