Murkowski offering a murky deal for our air

J.P. Leous

A few weeks ago I discussed a pending threat from Sen. Murkowski, and it looks like time is short. As you’ll recall, this should-be/ would-be climate champ is leading the charge to prevent the EPA from moving ahead on climate action. This is especially disconcerting, considering her home state of Alaska is feeling and will continue to feel the impacts of climate change far more than most places — just ask folks in Shishmaref and other towns falling into the sea!

Merely by introducing her resolution she has diverted energy and resources from meeting the challenge of our generation to arguing that EPA should be left alone to follow the science and the mandates of the Supreme Court. Meanwhile, 90 million tons of global warming pollution pour into our skies every day and our economy remains sidelined while countries like India and China speed ahead toward clean energy economies.

By now you must be thinking: “JP, surely Sen. Murkowski just wants to buy the Senate some time to tackle climate change, and that’s why she wants to prevent the EPA from moving ahead.” I wish it were that easy.

Make no mistake, Sen. Murkowski intends to force a vote that would upend a Supreme Court decision, block sound science, gut the Clean Air Act, and prevent American businesses from moving stridently toward clean energy investments.

Make no mistake, EPA Administrator Jackson, in a letter to Sen. Rockefeller just last week and in testimony before the Senate Appropriations Committee on Wednesday, detailed the limited scope EPA carbon pollution regulations would have on the US economy.

Make no mistake, Sen. Murkowski has not balanced her zeal to prevent meaningful and long-overdue action by the EPA with similar dedication to passing comprehensive clean energy and climate legislation. She hasn’t even introduced a bill.

As early as next week we expect Sen. Murkowski to move forward with her Dirty Air Act — and it’s now time for you to get engaged.

If you have not already done so, sign up for our electronic WildAlerts and become part of the army of wilderness advocates who are fighting to head off this dangerous resolution and head up the passage of an effective clean energy jobs and climate bill. And if you are willing to pick up the phone, call your Senator now. We need your voice saying NO to the Murky Dirty Air Act and YES to the passage of a strong clean energy and climate bill.