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Boos and Bravos – Sustainability

Boos+and+Bravos+-+Sustainability
Lindsey Otto

Boos and Bravos highlights the best and worst happening around the UA and Tucson communities and is brought to you by the Daily Wildcat Opinions Board. We welcome Boos and Bravos from our readers, tell us yours by sending an email to opinion@dailywildcat.com.

This week we are painting Boos and Bravos green while we give our thumbs up or down to issues related to sustainability. Of course, we don’t like to see majestic animals of the earth lose their habitats or see communities already affected by poverty be hit with additional challenges spurred by climate change. Sustainability encompasses more than carbon emissions. It touches just about everything in our daily lives, and the daily lives of future generations.

          RELATED: Editorial Board: Boos and Bravos 8/30

Bravo to the American people for seemingly growing more concerned and invested in addressing global warming. According to a March Gallop poll, record numbers of Americans are worried about the real threats of global warming and 62 percent believe those effects are happening now. The overall increases in the polls hint to record-high temperatures and possibly growing fears about the dismantling of environmental policies and the current administration’s stance on environmental topics. 

Boo to the recent increase of global greenhouse gas emissions. On Nov. 13, the Global Carbon Project reported that while scientists had hoped emissions had reached a peak and were set to decrease, 2017 has seen a 2 percent increase in emissions from fossil fuels and industry. This means the goal of temperature reduction set by the Paris Climate Agreement is moving farther out of reach. 

Glen Peters, a co-author of the report, said, “Global commitments made in Paris in 2015 to reduce emissions are still not being matched by actions. It is far too early to proclaim that we have turned a corner and started the journey towards zero emissions.”

Bravo to states and cities across the country speaking up and showing a commitment to curbing climate change, though the current presidential administration has stepped away from the Paris Climate Agreement. This June, Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild announced that the city would honor the climate agreement and the Pima County Board of Supervisors approved a resolution supporting it as well. 

Boo to President Donald Trump’s pick to lead the White House Council on Environmental Quality, Kathleen Hartnett White. The nominee is a supporter of the notion that more C02 is good for the planet, which makes sense given that she works for a think tank funded by some of the largest fossil fuel giants in existence, such as the Koch Brothers and Exxon. It’s OK that she’s not necessarily a scientist, but the environment at least needs some balanced representation in the White House. The list of climate deniers in Trump’s team is too long. And, let’s be real, she tanked her hearing, getting grilled by senators. 

          RELATED: Opinions Board: Boos and Bravos 6/28

Bravo to the University of Arizona for keeping a commitment to sustainability. The college has many initiatives in place or in the works to reduce our emissions, innovate renewable energy and help young people engage in more sustainable practices. To have leadership “buy in” by current UA President Dr. Robert Robbins makes all the difference. 

Boo to proposed entrance fee increases in the country’s national parks. Some of the U.S.’s most beautiful wonders could cost up to $70 to see. This prices out many people, robbing them of an experience we should all have; spending time in nature. In our eyes, the blame doesn’t fall on the National Park Service, but rather the administration who slashed the NPS’s budget. 

Bravo to those leaders out there who are keeping the importance of environmental practices and sustainability alive. We need cooperation from all sides of the political and social aisles to create environmental policy that actually does anything. Kudos to Debbie Dooley, a founder of the Tea Party, who shows that there are fiscal conservative issues that can be met in protecting the planet. Or, Pope Francis, who said destroying the planet is a sin, and that those hit hardest by global warming are refugees and the poor. For more examples of unique climate activists, we recommend the podcast, “Stepping Up,” available at almost all your favorite podcasting mediums. 

The Daily Wildcat Opinions Board is comprised of Opinions Editor Jamie Verwys, Editor-in-chief Chastity Laskey, Managing Editor Courtney Talak and Arts Editor Kathleen Kunz.


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