5 Ways the GOP's New Platform Fails the Environment

Flickr/CC BY 2.0

The Republican Party just approved its 2012 platform at its national convention in Tampa, and predictably, it includes some decidedly anti-environment directives. So, I present to you a handful of the most notably reckless objectives the GOP has now enshrined into its official mission statement:

Stop the EPA from addressing climate change

From the GOP Platform's text:
"We call on Congress to take quick action to prohibit the EPA from moving forward with new greenhouse gas regulations that will harm the nation’s economy and threaten millions of jobs over the next quarter century. The most powerful environmental policy is liberty, the central organizing principle of the American Republic and its people. Liberty alone fosters scientific inquiry, technological innovation, entrepreneurship, and information exchange. Liberty must remain the core energy behind America’s environmental improvement."

Bring on the coal

"Coal is a low-cost and abundant energy source with hundreds of years of supply. We look toward the private sector’s development of new, state-of-the-art coal-fired plants that will be low-cost, environmentally responsible, and efficient. We also encourage research and development of advanced technologies in this sector, including coal-to-liquid, coal gasification, and related technologies for enhanced oil recovery."

Approve Keystone XL

"We are committed to approving the Keystone XL Pipeline and to streamlining permitting for the development of other oil and natural gas pipelines."

Ban Agenda 21

This one might require some explaining: GOP is now officially unified in rejecting Agenda 21—a decades-old, entirely non-binding sustainability initiative signed by George H.W. Bush. It's now the basis for the GOP's third most rampant mainstream conspiracy theory; somewhere behind birtherism and death panels.

"We strongly reject the U.N. Agenda 21 as erosive of American sovereignty, and we oppose any form of U.N. Global Tax,” the Republican platform.

End high-speed rail and Amtrak funding

“It is long past time for the federal government to get out of the way and allow private ventures to provide passenger service to the Northeast Corridor. The same holds true with regard to high-speed and intercity rail across the country.”

There's other stuff in there too—expand offshore drilling, push for more fracking, etc, none of which should surprise anyone familiar with modern Republican politics. If the GOP keeps this up, it may just live up to its 'Most Anti-Environment Congress in History' moniker after all.

Tags: Agenda 21 | Congress