There’s no debate about climate change. It’s happening. And our military is going to be stretched thin fighting in conflicts exacerbated by food insecurity and the inevitable flood of climate refugees. Conflicts that we’re already seeing in places like Syria. ~Liesel K., US Marine Spouse
Despite the findings of more than 97% of actively publishing climate scientists who have found a definite relationship between climate-warming trends and human activity, the Republican Party, which now holds the Presidency as well as majorities in the both the House and Senate, is dominated by climate change deniers. The current President has said that “the concept of global-warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”
Meanwhile, the Department of Defense has listed climate change as a threat to national security and warns that climate change degrades living standards, human safety, and the ability for governments to meet the needs of their people. Despite this, Republicans in Congress have recently acted to block funding to the Department of Defense’s Directive 4715.21 which lays out the Pentagon’s action plan for climate change. We believe that immediate and sustained efforts must be made to reduce and reverse the impact of climate change and that Congress has failed in its responsibility to adequately plan for issues of national security.
Action: The Climate Change Education Act (S.3074) directs the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to establish a climate change education program for all age levels. It is currently in committee. Ask your Senator to be a co-sponsor of this legislation.
Action: Write Letters-to-the-Editor of your local paper explaining the national security connection to climate change. When we tie progressive issues to national security and do so as a member of the military community, it helps change minds in small towns.
Action: Additionally, we ask progressives to take part in the March for Science on February 22, 2017.
Environmental Protection Agency
As a native West Virginian and someone who brings my children “home” to help them with their dad’s deployments, the legislation signed by the President allowing coal debris to be dumped in streams, destroying mountains that are in my soul, is devastating. Gutting our only watchdog agency against polluters is irresponsible for our children’s futures. Leaving it up to the states isn’t the answer either. Military families don’t get to choose where they live and we deserve to keep our kids safe and in environments that help them thrive, not poison their bodies.” ~Katy B., US Marine Spouse
Designed to consolidate federal research, regulation, and enforcement in one agency, the EPA has been directly responsible for increases in air and water quality, banning harmful chemicals from the environment, reducing noise pollution and much more. Despite these accomplishments, the current administration has already moved to neuter the EPA by rolling back environmental regulations for industry and proposing to shut its enforcement arm. As one of his first moves in office, the current President ordered a media blackout of the agency and banned the EPA from awarding any new contracts. Moreover, the President has appointed Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to be the agency’s head; this man is actively hostile to the EPA and has sued the agency thirteen times.
Action: Call and write your Representatives, as well as write Letters to the Editor in your local papers, in support of legislation endorsed by the League of Conservation Voters.