3 - Keep Up - | Page 10/7/2008 Will the Environment Lose...

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| P a g e 1 0 / 7 / 2 0 0 8 Will the Environment Lose Out to the Economy? From Time Magazine By Bryan Walsh Tuesday, Oct. 07, 2008 Environmentalists are often accused — not always unfairly — of overplaying the fear card. With apocalyptic references to melting polar ice caps, rising sea levels and widespread species extinction, the driving message of environmentalism is that the future is doomed, unless we act now to save it. But what happens when another more alarming, more immediate catastrophe co-opts people's fear? That's the predicament greens find themselves in now, with what is potentially the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression scaring Americans out of their wits. With the tanking economy dominating the news, and the government willing to virtually bankrupt itself to bail out the financial sector, it could be hard to push the climate change agenda — and possibly hard to find any money left to support it. "If this crisis consumes all of our attention, it might definitely impact the speed at which [global warming] legislation could be passed," says Wiley Barbour, the founder of the American Carbon Registry. (Listen to Barbour talk about the effect that the financial crisis will have on global warming action on this week's Greencast.) Already this election season, concerns about the economy have trumped those about the environment. The 2008 Presidential election was supposed to be the first one in which global warming would be the front-and-center issue, but that hasn't been the case. (Though it is worth noting that for the first time, both candidates are on record supporting cap-and-trade legislation for greenhouse gases.) As panic over rising gas prices outplayed fears of melting Arctic ice, the Republican call to "drill, baby,
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3 - Keep Up - | Page 10/7/2008 Will the Environment Lose...

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