President George W. Bush has broken his campaign promise to curb carbon dioxide pollution, the primary gas causing global warming. His backpedaling after heavy lobbying by big-business interests deeply distresses the Sierra Club and other Americans concerned about the consequences of global warming.
"By failing to curb carbon dioxide pollution, President Bush is betraying his pledge to the American people and taking a dive on a crisis with disastrous consequences," said Carl Pope, the Sierra Club's executive director. "During the campaign, Gov. Bush tried to claim an environmental mantle, but in the White House he's bowing to big business instead of honoring his commitment to our children."
On the campaign trail in September, then-Gov. Bush promised "mandatory reduction targets for emissions of four main pollutants" including carbon dioxide. In recent weeks, his Environmental Protection Agency administrator, Christie Whitman, spoke out in support of Bush's campaign position, igniting the ire of business lobbyists. Today, President Bush reversed his position in a letter to Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE), promising to reduce only three air pollutants.
"When big business banged on the White House door, President Bush made a policy u-turn that will haunt our children," Pope said. "America is already experiencing the kinds of global warming catastrophes scientists have warned us about, such as heat waves, droughts, coastal flooding and malaria outbreaks."
President Bush's reversal rejects not only his campaign stance by also the concerns of world leaders. British Prime Minister Tony Blair raised his global warming concerns with President Bush during their Camp David meetings, and Administrator Whitman addressed the issue in a meeting with the Group of Eight environment ministers.
Written by: Sierra Club
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