“The best things carried to excess are wrong” – Winston Churchill
According to a statement made by Mitt Romney’s campaign press secretary, Andrea Saul back in July of last year.
“Gov. Romney does not think greenhouse gases are pollutants within the meaning of the Clean Air Act, and he does not believe that the EPA should be regulating them … CO2 is a naturally occurring gas. Humans emit it every time they exhale.” (emphasis mine) SOURCE
Andrea is correct. CO2 is indeed a naturally occurring gas that humans emit every time they exhale. As a walk away statement you simply want to shrug your shoulders though and say, “Okay?” However, what Andrea was primarily doing here in the larger context was giving Big Oil and Big Coal a wink, letting them know that Romney would remain in their back pocket. On a lower level she was assuring those climate-denying conservatives, who were still undecided at the time if Mitt was their man or not, that he too is climate-science challenged.
But what’s even more deceptive about this statement is the suggestion underlying it that CO2 is nothing to be concerned about. It’s natural and it’s been here since Adam and beyond. This is reflective of the half-truths that climate deniers are good at spitting out and that poorly informed people are good at swallowing, as if it were a whole truth.
If there is no need to worry about CO2 then we clearly don’t need trees, flowers, wild grasses and other flora that take this toxic CO2 and regurgitate it into healthy oxygen necessary for all life on this tiny blue dot.
Remember how all of this was explained to us in grade school?
As long as there are the natural (or “God-given” if you prefer) capabilities to convert this seemingly harmless CO2 into a more life friendly molecule, there is no reason to be concerned.
But let me add something to the knowledge base here for those who may have thought Ms. Saul was a gifted thinker. When you extract CO2 from beneath the surface where it is an inert substance – which essentially means that it has little or no ability to react with our biosphere – then you offset the natural balance whereby our planet can exchange CO2 at a rate that still allows us to have adequate oxygen to breathe and process life. Let me make this even simpler for those whose heads are fixing to explode if all of this is beginning to shine a light into your cave.
Put a plastic bag over your head and see how pleasant the CO2 your emitting is compared to the O2 you have now deprived your lungs of. Uncomfortable isn’t it? What’s happening ought to be clear because it happens at such a rapid rate. But this is exactly what is happening to the planet we live on; just at a slower rate that keeps you from noticing it – UNTIL IT’S TOO LATE. While you were busy buying those material creature comforts that require vast amounts of fossil fuel energy to make, your ability to survive was and continues to be, slowly squeezed off.
When we destroy millions of acres of forest to put up a new mall or housing development we are changing the balance nature has provided us to exchange CO2 for O2. Remember also that we lose millions of trees from wild fires which will be growing and spreading quicker over the coming years. Combine this along with all of the CO2 we extract lying out of harms way far below the Earth’s surface as fossil fuels and impose it upon the natural balance that allowed life to develop as we know it, then we dramatically alter the means to provide sufficient food sources, drinking water and healthy air that every living species on this planet requires to sustain itself.
So get one of those life’s Ms. Saul and all of you that thought she and others who parrot this half-truth knew what they were talking about. Join the majority of people who believe man-made global warming that impacts climate change is nothing to mock, like
RMoney Romney did at the Republican National Convention just a few short months ago.
I wonder if those people laughing at Romney’s shallowness in this video are laughing now at those people on the East coast that have recently suffered immense property damage and the death of a loved one from one of the worst natural disasters in our history? A natural disaster that was made worse from higher than natural levels of CO2 in the atmosphere that has resulted from burning oil, coal and natural gas. This imbalance has warmed the planet at unnatural rates and in so doing has rapidly enhanced ice melts in Greenland and the Arctic that elevated sea levels along the East coast and generated warmer ocean waters to make Sandy the ‘Frankenstorm” it became.
Will Romney and those who follow him realize too late that by helping us and our families requires something more than knowing how to invest other people’s capital and making yourself rich? Jobs will be the least of our children’s worries as they try to deal with water and food shortages and the inundation of climate change refugees.