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Peter Cannavo
Peter Cannavo

Cannavo Pens Op-ed for Huffington Post

Climate Change Discussion Lacking in This Year's Presidential Race

By Holly Foster
Posted October 28, 2012
Tags Climate Change Environmental Studies Government Levitt Sustainability Program Peter Cannavo Sustainability

Associate Professor of Government Peter Cannavò published an op-ed, “The Real Frankenstorm,” on The Huffington Post (Oct. 26, 2012). Cannavò contends that as the Northeast prepares for a major storm system, “another, less visible perfect storm with potentially much more devastating consequences has been developing throughout the last few decades. Climate change and its resulting dramatic consequences remain a footnote in political discourse as discussion of effective climate policy has been squashed by the radical right and ignored by the media.”

“Without serious, informed public discussion of the issue, we face potentially devastating and irreversible global consequences,” Cannavò writes. He is director of Hamilton's Environmental Studies Program and is director of the sustainability program for the Levitt Public Affairs Center.

Cannavò questions why there has been no discussion of climate change in this fall’s presidential debates, “in a year that may be the hottest year on record in the U.S., a year in which the nation suffered intense drought and devastating wildfires while record losses were reported in Arctic sea ice? … Yet, not a word by a candidate, not a single question from a moderator or the town hall audience.  Why?”

He continues, “The immediate political answers are fairly obvious.  Mitt Romney, to appeal to the Republican base – which has affirmed climate skepticism as an article of faith – has abandoned his earlier support, as Governor of Massachusetts, for climate regulations. Barack Obama has made notable but modest efforts to tackle climate change.  However, the vehement opposition of the GOP, the Tea Party, and Democrats from fossil fuel states has made the issue politically toxic, so that the President gave up – perhaps all too readily – on any push for Congressional legislation.”

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