by Jim Ball
[Editor's Note: This is the Introduction to a 7-part blog series.]
Climate change has nearly disappeared from the national conversation. But climate change itself has not disappeared. It still remains the great moral challenge of our time, impacting billions this century and a mortal threat to millions of the world's poor. And if we don't act decisively in the next few years dangerous tipping points could be crossed with consequences yet to be fully imagined. Overcoming climate change is still possible, but that window will soon close.
Instead of talking about climate change, President Obama talks about clean energy -- and here lately he's shifted from talking about clean energy to talking about "American energy," even using a favorite phrase of Speaker John Boehner and House Republicans, an "all of the above" approach to American energy.
Now there are lots of good things associated with clean energy, with striving for "energy security" and "energy independence." And it is vital to have an emphasis on producing more clean energy here in the United States. Who isn't for clean energy made in America?
But to be a real leader of our country at this moment requires the President to talk about overcoming global warming, not just energy.
To have the necessary political and moral authority to be the leader he needs to be, the next President (whether that be our current President or Gov. Romney) must state publicly that overcoming global warming will be a top priority in his Administration; without this, it will be extremely difficult for him to come to Congress and the country and ask for their support, given that major changes are needed that will affect all of us.
I'm sure President Obama's rhetorical turns of phrase on energy poll quite well. And I'm guessing his political advisors could be telling the President to stay away from talking about climate change.
But for the good of the country and the world the President must explain to the country why significant climate action is needed.
Here are 7 reasons why:
7. Essential to Create Public Support to Pass Climate Change Legislation
(These 7 Reasons Why also apply to Gov. Romney. But he must also clarify his basic stance on the issue.)
As part of this series, each of these 7 reasons will be posted as a separate blog post over the coming days.
The Rev. Jim Ball, Ph.D., is EEN's Executive Vice President for Policy and Climate Change and author of Global Warming and the Risen LORD.