Last month, the White House edited climate change from Obama’s Earth Day 2012 proclamation. That was after the President omitted any discussion of climate change from his State of the Union address.
But then, in a Rolling Stone interview, Obama unexpectedly broke out of his self-imposed silence on climate change, saying he thought climate change would be a campaign issue.
Of course, it would be hard for climate to be a campaign issue if the president doesn’t actually talk about it in public. After all, his challenger Mitt Romney seems unlikely to bring it up, having Etch-a-Sketched his position on that subject many times. And Lord knows that media isn’t itching to talk about climate.
So it was disappointing again once again that on Thursday, the President reverted to form in his big speech on energy at TPI Composites, a wind-blade manufacturing plant in Newton, Iowa.
The speech never mentions “climate change” or “global warming” or even “greenhouse gases” or “carbon” or even “pollution”!
It’s a fairly long speech, over half of which is focused on energy, to argue for extending “tax credits that are set to expire at the end of the year for clean-energy companies like TPI.” Those credits are certainly worth fighting for since 37,000 wind jobs are at stake – as is leadership in a global industry that will be one of the largest job creators in the coming decades when the world finally start taking serious action on climate.
But as Henry Waxman (D-CA), the Ranking Minority Member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, said last year:
If you are a science denier, there is no reason for government to invest in clean energy.
Now it may be that in the current political climate, no argument would win. But both climate action and federal clean energy investment are classic wedge issues that have broad support with the American public, including independents and moderate Republicans, those not aligned with the Tea Party (see “Can We Stop The Collapse of Federal Clean Energy Support Without Talking About Climate Change Or A Carbon Price?” and links below).
Here, are the President’s remarks on energy in Iowa: