The latest Quinnipac University poll showed a remarkable difference in the answer to their greatest concern, especially between Democrats and Republicans. The Question was: In your opinion, what is the most urgent issue facing the country today: COVID-19, inflation, unemployment, climate change, health care, racial inequality, immigration, foreign policy, election laws, the Supreme Court, or crime?
The Democrats greatest concern was Climate Change, followed by Election Laws and Inflation. At the bottom of the list was the Supreme Court.
The Republicans greatest concern was Inflation, followed by Immigration and Crime. At the bottom of the list was Climate Change.
The Independents greatest concern was Inflation, followed by Immigration and COVID-19. At the bottom of the list was Unemployment.
For Blacks there was a tie between COVID-19 and Inflation as their greatest concern, followed by Racial Inequality. At the bottom of the list was the Supreme Court.
And for Hispanics the greatest concern was Inflation, followed by Climate change and COVID-19. At the bottom of the list was Supreme Court.
The biggest concern was Inflation for everybody but Democrats. Their biggest concern was Climate Change, but for Republicans that was the least of their worries.
Why is that?
Some Democrats believe with religious fervor that we have only limited time to solve the climate crisis before we reach the point of no return. Alexandra Occasio Cortez said in January 2019 that if we didn’t abolish fossil fuel asap the world will end in 12 years. There is now less than 9 years left. President Trump ended our part in the Paris accord, and President Biden rejoined it in 2021. If we fulfill all the Paris accord demands, the world temperature, according to the UN agency IPCC will rise 0.05 C cooler by 2030, and a whopping 0.17C less by 2100. See analysis here. Meanwhile, China is in negotiations to buy another 100 million metric tons of Coal from Russia. They consume half the world’s coal mining.
For other Democrats it is another method of gaining control of all production and consumption, the Venezuelan model.
Then there is the sustainability crowd, and they point out the obvious fact, that unless something is done, we will run out of Coal, Oil and Gas sometimes in the not too distant future. Their suggested solution is to build Wind Turbines with generators made in China and western Europe. Solar panels are mostly built in China. But that is not the worst part. To build these generators and solar panels we need rare earth metals, 80% of which come from China. Details here. The problem is what to do when the sun doesn’t shine, which is most of the time, and the wind doesn’t blow. Energy must then be produced by other means. For now it is generated by coal and natural gas plus some diesel generators. Battery technology is not there yet, and hydro-power storage is way inadequate for today’s need.
And then there is John Kerry, who’s greatest fear is that the war in Ukraine will distract us from our greatest threat, Climate Change. His latest concern on Migration: “Wait until you see 100 million people for whom the entire food production capacity has collapsed.”
Some Republicans thank God for the increased CO2 levels because thanks to that the world can now keep an additional 2 billion people from starving. It seems hard to believe, but as food yield increases in greenhouses when additional CO2 is added, so does the greenhouse called earth benefit from more CO2. Don’t believe me? Look at this map:
Others have noticed that the dire predictions from IPCC, a UN Climate Change Panel, have always been way off base. The temperature increase, while real has always been way below what is predicted. It is predicted that the largest temperature increases occur at the poles, so this summer the South Pole had its coldest winter on record. A weather station at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station registered record cold winter temperatures this season (April – September), averaging at -61.1 °C (-77.9 °F) and breaking the previous record set in 1976 at -60.6 °C (-77 °F). Weather records date back to 1957. The North Pole on the other hand is experiencing a warmer trend, but only in the winter. The summers are marginally cooler, but that is because there is more now to melt. Yes, the Snow over the Arctic is increasing. See the chart from Rutgers Snow Lab:
These are but a few of the differences in opinion concerning Climate change. Let’s see where democrats and republicans live. If we look at the 2020 voting results the map looks nearly all Republican: (84% of the counties voted Republican)
Yet there were more Democrat votes cast than Republican. This is because the largest counties population wise vote Democrat and they experience Climate Change big time thanks to the so called Urban Heat Island effect:
People living in the rural America do not experience the Urban Heat Island effect, so they tend to dismiss the constant drumbeat from PBS, everything bad is because of climate change as just idle talk. What do they know; they are stuck in their asphalt jungle complaining about how bad things are. The rural people remember how their grandparents used to say it was much worse in the thirties, heatwave after heatwave and everything dried up. And dust storms and wildfires were much worse. Not to mention the winters, the Mississippi river froze all the way down to New Orleans. We have never has it so good as it is now. Poor Urban Heat Island dwellers.
The Democrats solution to Climate Change is: Eliminate CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and replace with wind and solar but not nuclear power. All cars trucks, trains and busses should be electric. This is impossible.
Republicans want to gradually lessen our dependency of fossil fuel and make electric production come from Nuclear power, preferably small modular Thorium reactors. They have many advantages explained here. There are immense environmental problems, it is not CO2 or even Methane, but water. The American South-west has too little water for its growing population and the east US has sometimes too much. One possible solution is described here.