U.S. News & World Report: Romm is one of the 8 “most influential energy and environmental policymakers in the Obama era”

In terms of his cachet in the blogosphere, Joe Romm is something like the climate change equivalent of economist (and New York Times columnist) Paul Krugman.

Okay, I am tooting my own horn here. But hey, this is a weblog — and I do bill this as “an insider’s view of climate science, politics and solutions,” so I think readers should know when a credible independent source validates my claim.

[Note: If anyone has come here from the U.S. News link, be sure to read “An Introduction to Climate Progress.”]

“Green Economy” is the focus of the April issue of U.S. News and World Report. Their website describes the piece I’m featured in as:

8 Top Washington Players
The most influential energy and environmental policymakers in the Obama era.

Inside, they list Lisa Jackson, Barbara Boxer, Lisa Murkowski, Steven Chu, Al Gore, Henry Waxman, Carol Browner, and me.

My profile (here) begins with the over-the-top Krugman comparison above, and continues with a pretty fair description, I think (with maybe one tiny asterisk):

Romm runs his own blog, He was a deputy assistant secretary of energy in the Clinton administration. Today, he’s a senior fellow at the left-leaning think tank Center for American Progress, an oft-cited expert on climate change issues, and a go-to witness at congressional hearings.

Romm’s positions are well defined and, in most cases, aggressively liberal. He holds that climate change is advancing more swiftly than most people think and than the mainstream media usually report. He has called for significantly ramping up government spending on clean energy technology, halting the construction of new coal plants, rapidly increasing the use of energy-efficient technologies, and imposing a cap-and-trade system to sharply limit carbon dioxide emissions.

Romm is a prolific writer and commentator. On his blog, he cuts through opposing arguments with an array of statistics, citations, cross-links, and sarcasm. One such headline: “Memo to T. Boone Pickens: Your Energy Plan Is Half-Brilliant, Half-Dumb.” He’s also a critic of the media for failing, in his view, to adequately inform the public of the connection between current events, like the devastating wildfires in Australia, and global warming, which he says must be addressed now. “I think that the media has to make clear what the vast majority of the scientific community says,” Romm says

I suppose my positions are, for some, “aggressively liberal” but I view them as “aggressively science-based.” It’s just that the conservatives have decided to be aggressively anti-science-based (see “Hill conservatives reject all 3 climate strategies and embrace Rush Limbaugh — what does that radicalism mean for Obama, progressives, and humanity?“).

Curiously, the print version gives me the sub-head “climate change expert” while the online version lists me as “top energy player.” The bottom line is that today, there really isn’t much separation between climate policy and energy policy.

ClimateProgress readers are definitely getting what they are paying for — but then that is true of almost every blog!

In any case, I definitely would not have received this recognition if it were not for this blog, whose success I owe in large part to you, the readers. So thank you!

Here is how part of the spread looks in the magazine:

31 Responses to U.S. News & World Report: Romm is one of the 8 “most influential energy and environmental policymakers in the Obama era”

  1. Rick C says:

    Congrats on the endorsement Joe and for cutting through all the BS.


  2. Rick C says:

    Oh, and yes climate science is liberal, I suppose, in the way that Galileo’s heliocentric proposal (Sun is the center of the solar system, not earth) was heretical.

  3. David B. Benson says:

    Joe Romm — :-)

    5: broad-minded ; especially : not bound by authoritarianism, orthodoxy, or traditional forms


    and on another topic, a Dr. Kim at PNNL is working on significantly reducing NOx emissions from diesel engines.

  4. hapa says:

    Ooooh, the mainstream press is giving you permission to show no mercy

  5. Drew Jones says:

    YEAH Joe!!! Use this power to make GREAT things happen. Go for it!

  6. Gail says:

    Oh sure, but did they put in the profile that you live-blog into voice recognition while cruising around in a hydrogen-powered vehicle WEARING PAJAMAS?? Of which there is video, somewhere on the intertubes?

  7. Marie says:

    Congratulations, Joe! Your blog is great. I’m glad you’re considered influential as well. It gives one hope.

  8. K Nockles says:

    Hey Joe we knew all this all the time!!! Great Job! Could it be true the truth is really getting out? Go for the Jugular.

  9. Congrats, you deserve it and more.

    And of course, thank you too for accepting our comments!

  10. Joe says:

    Thanks, all.

    Not influential enough to keep 2 billion tons of rip-offsets out of Waxman-Markey, but still!

  11. Brewster says:

    “ClimateProgress readers are definitely getting what they are paying for”

    I think I am – in fact, I’m doubling my payments as of right now!

  12. paulm says:

    Yahoo! Toot Toot…

  13. john says:

    Wow! Great recognition, and well deserved! Congratulations, Joe.

  14. john says:

    I was just reading over the list of the other seven, to see what great company you’ve been lumped with and 1 name jumped out like an off key clang from a cracked bell:


    Well, she is one of the least trogloditic of the Republicans on the issue, but one of the 8 most influential? Hardly.

    But it doesn’t diminish your deserving recognition, Joe.

  15. Dean says:

    Joe, this is great! Even after writing five books and scores of op-ed pieces and articles, including cover articles for the _Atlantic_ and _Scientific American_–even after giving countless public presentations and holding high appointed office–you and your work were still known only to the cognoscenti. In the last couple of years, with this blog, you’ve finally got the public recognition you’ve long deserved. And that’s a good thing for all of us.

  16. ZS says:

    Jeez Joe, it’s like you’ve hit the tipping point on recognition for CP lately! Keep it up – it’s well deserved.

  17. Dave Romm says:

    “Reality has a well-known liberal bias.” — Stephen Colbert, White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner 4/29/06. Congrats, Joe! It used to be a proud and lonely thing to be “aggressively liberal,” and now it’s simply a proud thing.

  18. Harrier says:

    I knew this blog was going places. I have a knack for sniffing out good things just as they hit their stride.

  19. jorleh says:

    Congrats too. I have wondered for a long time why Joe`s blog is not read by all, perhaps the time has come now. Other climate and energy blogs are miles away from this. Go on, Joe!

  20. paulm says:

    The Breathtaking Effects Of Cutting Back On Meat

    According to Environmental Defense, if every American skipped one meal of chicken per week and substituted vegetarian foods instead, the carbon dioxide savings would be the same as taking more than half a million cars off of U.S. roads. See how easy it is to make an impact?

  21. Pat Richards says:

    Fame is fleeting and the media which praises you today can just as easily pillory you tomorrow. Don’t let the carbon dioxide go to your head :)

  22. Good on you Joe

    Prolific Writer is an understatement. I counted 7 articles on monday. How? And it isn’t like saturday and sunday didn’t have articles too.

  23. Anne says:

    Congrats, Joe. You deserve many kudos. This an interesting list. “Most influential” is one thing — in jackson’s case, she has the potential to be influential merely by virtue of her position, just as Steve Johnson was influential. But, his influence was quite unremarkable, even deleterious to the cause. Al Gore’s influence is orders of magnitude above all the others. Barbara Boxer gets much credit for being influential but history won’t give her credit for helping to solve the climate problem unless and until a decent climate bill passes. The same goes for Waxman. Of this list, you and Al Gore are the only ones not on the US payroll, and Gore was on it for so long that he may as well still be — after all, he used to be the next President of the United States.. So your influence is not about your job title, it’s about what you actually influence, all by your lonesome, on a laptop. Now that’s downright impressive.

  24. ecostew says:

    Thanks Joe

  25. Dennis says:

    I agree, of course, with all the other positive comments and congratulations. As a newcomer to the blog (via Tom Friedman), I’ve appreciated the clearly explained science and have passed the information and the blog address on to others. I’ve also read Hell and High Water. Sorry Joe, no royalties–I checked it out from the great print recycling center, the public library.

  26. CTF says:

    Congratulations, Joe!

  27. lgcarey says:

    Congratulations – well deserved recognition.

  28. Joe —

    If for nothing else than your excellent book, “The Hype about Hydrogen,” you deserve our thanks. Climate Progress is a daily delight.

  29. ids says:

    As if corporate lobbyists do not exist and/or have no influence. Just another example of burying a nation’s head in the sand.

  30. Pangolin says:

    “Lisa Jackson, Barbara Boxer, Lisa Murkowski, Steven Chu, Al Gore, Henry Waxman, Carol Browner, and me.”- JR

    Frankly I find you more readable and more solidly founded in science than Al Gore. You’re in good company with Jackson, Browner and Chu. But when they compared you to Boxer, Waxman and Murkowski they did you a disservice. They’re politicians first last and always; ick!

    It’s good that the US has national voices that are accurate and strong on Climate Change. I have been reading George Monbiot’s posts in the UK Guardian and they lack a certain degree of technical vigor which is to say he can be a flaming whack job sometimes.

    I like to push the doomer point a little hard in responses but I think you shouldn’t change a thing. Great work!

  31. Steven says:

    Congrats, Joe. We need more “most influential” people like you.