An incredible confluence of news stories

Unconscionable delay with costs in our lives,  health, & electricity costs

By  Richard C. Bartlett

We have just witnessed an incredible confluence of news stories.  

Simultaneously the Minerals Management dis-Service has announced  their April draft report has now been pushed back to late fall, and  the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has  issued it's report outlining the worldwide catastrophes we have in  store if we don't take immediate action in every way to change our  irresponsible public and private behavior.

The connection is obvious and maddening. After 6 years of study  we have this unconscionable new delay with costs in our lives,  health, and electricity charges affecting all Cape Codders and Islanders. The details of those costs have been spelled out by  Charles Kleekamp in an op-ed. If you haven't yet read it, check it  out on Clean Power Now.

The report of the IPCC itemizes the disastrous effects for the  whole planet; droughts turning agricultural areas into deserts, sea  rises threatening coastline dwellers everywhere, increasingly  destructive weather events, extinction of up to 30% of all species,  economic ruin for millions. The media have reported this admirably,  and internet users can find it easily if they wish to study the details.

I don't believe it is paranoid to think that on this literally  earth-shaking issue a powerful few are selfishly putting their own  interests in the way of the best interests of all the rest of us. The  billionaire/millionaire Alliance to Prevent Clean Energy has spent  staggering sums on lobbying. Our sailing senator values his  playground over the health of his constituents. Our windsurfing  junior senator has tried to hide his obeisance to his senior and has  withheld his suport for Cape Wind.Our representative dissembles with  environmental proposals that would in reality prevent progress. A  slew of lesser officials took positions that were once popular, and  are too cowardly to change their stances now that so much more is known.

Of course we have always known our petro-political  administration in Washington has been in denial on climate change  from day one. Their recent acknowledgments haven't been accompanied  by meaningful reforms of their energy policies.

We know of some of the manuevers, undercover as well as open, by Warner/Kennedy/Stevens and Delahunt designed to stop our chance for  healthier, clean, affordable electricity. Is there any reason we  shouldn't suspect that politics and fossil money is behind the new  delay in the MMS report?

With the environment's bleak future, it is a relief to be an  octogenarian. But doesn't simple decency oblige us to be good  stewards for the youngsters sake anyway?

Richard C. Bartlett, Cotuit

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