Sunday, February 6, 2011

Might Duane Sand *not* truly be a climate science denialist?

It has become basically a litmus test for any Republican that he or she disbelieve the decades of accumulated knowledge and understanding that explains how human activities, particularly burning fossil fuels, are driving climate change. There are a range of ways to get your check mark, from pretending the issue of climate change does not exist (a la Rick Berg) or mostly ignoring the issue except for citing some thinktank-invented uncertainty (a la John Hoeven) to the full-blown tinfoil hat proclamations that it is all a hoax (a la Senator Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma).

In today's Herald multiple-time North Dakota Republican candidate for Congress Duane Sand made a sales pitch for nuclear power. (Nuclear power is a whole other issue - low-carbon but very expensive to say the least.) In a place in that op-ed one could pretty easily interpret Sand as acknowledging that carbon emissions need to decrease, and by really reaching one could guess that Sand understands the reason for that is their effect on climate and the environment.

For certain Sand maintains plausible deniability. He could always say that his mention of the need to replace "aging carbon-emitting power plants" does not mean that he thinks climate scientists are not wrong and/or lying. Also he might only have opposition to fossil fuels to the extent it would stand in the way of nuclear power.

And of course in the past Sand has tried to disregard climate science in favor of his own musings. Might his Americans for Prosperity ideology slightly worn off? Perhaps he is confusing himself with another non-denialist Duane Sand.

Maybe just maybe though, sanity and realism are trying to bubble to the surface for Sand. If so, do not fight it, Duane! Be a leader - acknowledge the need to decrease carbon pollution, and fight to make it happen!

No comments:

Post a Comment