Dylan Ratigan: “We have this unholy alliance between business and state, that allows the energy companies to effectively either use off balance sheet accounting, like the Pentagon, to secure energy resources, or off balance sheet accounting like environmental costs that none of which are reflected in the cost at the pump, or for that matter, coal, or whatever the fuel source is.”
MSNBC and radio talk show host Dylan Ratigan has spent this week looking at why our nation’s broken energy policy threatens the future of America. He’s talked with former CIA director Jim Woolsey on the implications for national security and Texas tycoon T. Boone Pickens about the limits of the global oil supply. In an interview for his podcast, he conversed with yours truly about the environmental consequences of our broken fossil-fuel economy. I told him what I believe are the biggest environmental threats we Americans face:
The essential threat that we don’t have any system to deal with right now and that threatens genuinely global civilization is essentially the carbon loading of our atmosphere and our oceans. So global warming, ocean acidification, those are not just threats that are changing our health today, but because there’s no system to handle it, that’s one of the biggest reasons that I have to put it at the top of the list. Of course, if you’re a citizen living in a coal hollow in Appalachia or you’re someone downwind of a power plant in a city, then the fact that even though there are laws on the books to protect the health of the people and the water there, the fact that those laws are not being enforced probably ends up being the key threat for those people.
“The more we can identify the same problem and address that core problem, which is this unholy alliance between business and state, effectively, in our country, whether it’s the healthcare companies or the energy companies, we might be able to begin to solve some of these problems,” Ratigan remarked.
“Unless we get off this carousel, it’s not like these changes will just stop,” I concluded. “Every decade will keep on changing and getting worse in less predictable ways that we just don’t simply understand.”
Listen to the full interview and read the transcript at DylanRatigan.com.