Image courtesy of Backpacker
In an exclusive Backpacker Magazine interview, the presidential candidates discussed their prospective policies regarding a slew of environmental topics: global warming solutions, cap and trade policies, oil drilling, gun laws in national parks, and endangered species rulings were some of the subjects addressed. Plus, they each touched upon the origins of their environmental views, and what shaped their outlook on nature.Obama and McCain's Environmental Views
Here's a rundown of a few of the more interesting stances revealed from the interview:
-McCain would support allowing loaded guns in national parks, (guns are currently banned from almost all national parks) and though he fully supports 2nd Amendment rights, Obama is "concerned about allowing loaded firearms into family-oriented spaces"
-Regarding the protected Rocky Mountain Gray Wolf, McCain welcomes "delisting the wolves where appropriate"
-Obama says he will "will increase funding for the Conservation Security Program and the Conservation Reserve Program and will create additional incentives for private landowners for sustainable agriculture"
-McCain emphasizes the need for a "greater reliance on nuclear power."
-Both candidates support a cap and trade system for limiting and reducing greenhouse gases (McCain's goal is 60 percent below levels in the 1990's, and Obama's aims for 80 percent below)
Origins of Obama and McCain's Environmental Views
For Obama, it was growing up in Hawaii that fostered his respect for the great outdoors, and McCain has witnessed the damage done by global warming. From the interview:
What experiences have affected your views on the environment?
Obama: My connection to the earth was formed during my time in Hawaii, my birthplace. I think those of us who grew up in Hawaii have a particular attachment to the land and understand how fragile it is. When you are snorkeling through the coral reefs, you can see firsthand that a slight change in temperature or increase in sediment and runoff or change in acidification could end up destroying it all and making it unavailable for your children.
McCain: I have viewed the tremendous harm that global warming has done to our planet. In Greenland, you can see the glaciers have receded dramatically. You can see the impact in northern Norway. You can go to the South Pole and see incredible damage. These are the visible and disturbing manifestations of climate change, and they should compel us to action.
Read the entire interview at Backpacker.
More on Environmental Views in Presidential Politics:
Sarah Palin's Record on the Environment: A Closer Look
My Bottom Line is Green: McCain Vs. Obama on Renewable Energy