Obama's Hidden Role in Worsening Climate Change

By Stansfield Smith / counterpunch.org
Jan 20, 2017
4
Obama's Hidden Role in Worsening Climate Change

It should be a scandal that leftists-liberals paint Trump as a special threat, a war mongerer – not Obama who is the first president to be at war everyday of his eight years, who is waging seven wars at present, who dropped three bombs an hour, 24 hours a day, the entire 2016. Here[1] is some of the worst of this anti-Trump hysteria propagated by mouthpieces for liberal Democrats – calling Republicans “fascist” is a favorite left-liberal sport.

It is probably true Trump represents “a regime of grave danger,” an “immoral peril to the future of humanity and the earth itself,” by his denial of global warming. Yet Obama was also clearly a grave peril, one many progressives chose not to see clearly. Obama owns a long pattern of feel-good rhetoric and empty promises followed with no delivery. While many progressives got angry at his hypocrisy, many still were willing to turn the other cheek.

This helps explain why we don’t know that Obama, who says he recognizes the threat to humanity posed by climate change, still invested at least $34 billion to promote fossil fuel projects in other countries. That is three times as much as George W Bush spent in his two terms, almost twice that of Ronald Reagan, George HW Bush and Bill Clinton put together.

Obama financed 70 foreign fossil fuel projects. When completed they will release 164 million metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere every year – about the same output as the 95 currently operating coal-fired power plants in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Oklahoma. He financed two natural gas plants on an island in the Great Barrier Reef, as well as two of the largest coalmines on the planet.

Obama did have his Clean Power Plan for the US, estimated to reduce carbon emissions by 2.5 billion tons over 15 years. But the foreign projects he approved will produce about the same carbon emissions as the Clean Power Plan savings. These foreign emissions increases financed by Obama aren’t counted toward US totals, but the impact on climate change is identical regardless the place of origin.[2]

Moreover, under Obama has reversed the steady drop in U.S. oil production which had continued unchecked since 1971.[3] The U.S. was pumping just 5.1 million barrels per day when Obama took office. By April 2016 it was up to 8.9 million barrels per day. A 74% increase! In 2015, the U.S. pumped the most oil in 43 years. The U.S. is now the world’s No. 1 petroleum producer if we include both crude and natural gas. In oil production itself, the U.S. ranks No. 3, just behind Russia and Saudi Arabia.[4]

If Bush had this record, it would be jumped on to expose him all the more as a tool of the oil companies. Different standard for Democrat Obama. His administration accelerated the destruction of the earth, and many environmental groups and liberal-leftists soft pedaled or even covered it up.

On top of this, in 2010 Project Censored called the US military the biggest polluter on the planet.[5] What measures did Obama take? He exempted it from climate change regulation!

“The Pentagon [which accounts for 80% of US government fuel usage] is also exempt from an executive order by President Obama requiring other federal agencies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2020.”[6]

Obama proudly said in 2012, quoted in the film This Changes Everything:

“Over the last three years I’ve directed my administration to open up millions of acres for gas and oil exploration across 23 different states. We’re opening up more than 75% of our potential oil resources offshore. We’ve quadrupled the number of operating rigs to a record high. We’ve added enough oil and gas pipelines to encircle the earth and then some. So, we are drilling all over the place, right now.”

Drill, baby, drill!

Yet this is how Obama scammed us in his feel-good farewell speech – though many liberals like how he makes them feel good, and often don’t want to hear about the reality:

“Take the challenge of climate change. In just eight years we’ve halved our dependence on foreign oil, we’ve doubled our renewable energy, we’ve led the world to an agreement that has the promise to save this planet.”

In calling out Obama on his criminal record against the planet we must also call out our left-liberal and environmentalist friends who helped downplay it. And this struggle takes new form today in this broad anti-Trump coalition, which left-liberals will try to use to herald in a new Obama in 2020.

Notes.

[1]  http://www.commondreams.org/news/2017/01/04/urging-millions-rise-trump-foes-issue-call-resist-fascism

[2] https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/nov/30/us-fossil-fuel-investment-obama-climate-change-legacy

[3]  http://money.cnn.com/2015/01/28/news/economy/obama-oil-boom/index.html

[4] http://money.cnn.com/2016/07/21/investing/trump-energy-plan-obama-oil-boom/

[5] http://projectcensored.org/2-us-department-of-defense-is-the-worst-polluter-on-the-planet/

[6] http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/07/23/72279/

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Stansfield Smith, Chicago ALBA Solidarity Committee, recently returned from a SOA Watch, Task Force on the Americas delegation to Venezuela.

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