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Texas Conservatives Start Fund To Battle Impacts Of Warming-Driven Droughts, But Won’t Mention Climate Change

By Rebecca Leber  

"Texas Conservatives Start Fund To Battle Impacts Of Warming-Driven Droughts, But Won’t Mention Climate Change"

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Whether Texas lawmakers want to admit it or not, they are already planning for the effects of climate change.

Much of Texas has suffered a prolonged drought that has drained reservoirs to some of their lowest levels — this year could be even worst. The situation is so dire that the GOP-led Texas House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a long-term “rainy day” fund that invests in water infrastructure to prepare for the more frequent droughts in coming decades, although they did not acknowledge the connection to climate change.

ClimateWire reports on the initial funding of the plan from the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB):

To a round of applause, 146 state legislators approved H.B. 4, which would finance a new fund to begin investing in new infrastructure and other projects by dipping into the state’s so-called rainy day fund. The $2 billion that would be taken from the rainy day fund for the water plan is just a down payment toward TWDB’s call for some $53 billion in spending over the next 40 years, $27 billion of which is expected to come directly from the state government.

Texas is one of many states to face the brunt of hotter, drier weather. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) says Texas droughts are now 20 times more likely than they were in the 1960s. In 2011, a Texas climatologist described the drought as once in “maybe 500 or 1,000 years.” But “one more year and we’re already talking about a drought more severe than anything we’ve ever had.”

Higher temperatures driven by climate change worsen the drought cycle, and once the ground is dry, temperatures soar higher.

NOAA’s latest map shows how drought covers now virtually the entire state:

The Texas legislature, packed with climate-deniers, did not make any mention of what fuels the state’s predicament. But their move shows that drought and a hotter climate is a new reality for even the most conservative policymakers.

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9 Responses to Texas Conservatives Start Fund To Battle Impacts Of Warming-Driven Droughts, But Won’t Mention Climate Change

  1. It’s funny that intellectual vanity is such a motivation.

  2. I guess that it will take a long, long time to get governments to realize that mitigation is cheaper than adaptation. And both are cheaper than continuous bailouts to those who choose not to understand.

  3. BobbyL says:

    Texas is not your typical state. Read Gail Collin’s book As Texas Goes….How the Lone Star State Hijacked the American Agenda.

  4. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    In the reptilian labyrinth of the Rightwing ‘brain’ (perhaps that should be the ‘reptilian corridor’)there is nothing more feared and despised than the prospect of admitting error. The highest dread and fury is elicited by admitting error to a ‘Greenie’. Unfortunately, we, the rational, humane types, often seriously misjudge the enemy. They are not logical, thinking individuals, simply misinformed and deluded, and capable of being educated and brought into the light by appeals to their ‘better nature’. Quite the opposite in fact-when confronted by evidence that they are in error, they destroy the evidence and shoot the messenger. That wretched reality, that so many refuse to accept, because of its ghastly implications, is the root cause of the unfolding human cataclysm.

  5. Merrelyn Emery says:

    That is really hilarious! ME

  6. Robkuhr says:

    Let Texan Republican Teabagger Christians eat dust. They are some of the most vocal global warming nay sayers. Cruz, Perry, Gohmert et al can bathe in hot air. No sympathy. Texas deserves it. Perhaps the revenue generated form sales of guns to encroaching drug cartels, will soften weather related catastrophes. Time to pick yourself up with your own bootstraps. Isn’t that the shtick?

  7. Daniel Coffey says:

    I guess for Texas, Global Warming is just a theory, but a drought is a lack of water. When confronted with a real lack of water, take action; when confronted with a mere theory, ignore it. Now, it takes a thinking person to anticipate and understand the root cause of that which presents itself as a more intense consequence which appears like many other natural phenomena one might experience in life. Knowing how to tell when something is different in degree and duration requires wisdom, and in Texas wisdom will not get you elected.

    In fact, it seems that even the appearance of wisdom is a political liability.

    Gov. Perry was in California recently espousing the virtues of Texas; he did not mention it was dry as an old bone.