As Juliet Eilperin, Brady Dennis, and Chris Mooney of The Washington Post reported on September 27, the Trump administration seems to finally be acknowledging that climate change is real. But the motivation for recognizing that reality is cynical, at best, so rather than proposing doing something – anything – about climate change, the administration concludes we shouldn't bother trying.
Buried in a 500-page justification for a rule that would prevent California (and, by extension, other states) from regulating emissions of greenhouse gases from new vehicles, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) states that any regulation of greenhouse gases would be futile because climate models show that global temperatures will increase by up to 7 degrees Fahrenheit no matter how the United States behaves.
For years, many conservatives have denied that climate change is real and that humans have caused climate change by burning fossil fuels. Even as global temperatures have climbed to unprecedented levels, ice sheets have begun to fracture, hurricanes have become stronger and wetter, and droughts and wildfires have become increasingly prevalent, conservatives have pushed back against any link between fossil fuels and our changing climate – all in service of making sure we do nothing about it.
Donald Trump took climate-change denial to new levels during the 2016 campaign, claiming that climate change is a "hoax" perpetuated by the Chinese to somehow weaken our economy. Following through on the "hoax" ...