The QueQue: Protesting Canadian tar sands in Texas, Global warning hasn’t reached Perry
Published: August 24, 2011
We’re venturing into the climate of the future, a condition most of the scientific community expects to lock in and worsen across the Southwest U.S. and Central America as the full brunt of global warming comes to bear. Were Texas to secede, as Perry has said it justifiably could, the new republic would rank in the top 10 globally for the amount of climate-destabilizing greenhouse gas it pumps out. That is to say, what Perry thinks about climate change matters.
And as bad as this summer’s drought has been, Texas State Climatologist and Texas A&M University professor John Nielsen-Gammon warned the Houston Chronicle this week that we can expect this drought to last another couple years. “I’ve started telling anyone who’s interested that it’s likely much of Texas will be in severe drought this time next summer, with water supply implications even worse than we are now experiencing.”
Early this month, the Current filed a state open records request for any communications between Nielsen-Gammon and the governor’s office since his appointment in 2000. The result? Aside from the first proclamation by former Gov. George W. Bush naming Nielsen-Gammon to his post, the only communication between the two have been directives from the governor’s office to all appointees about such matters as how to comply with open-records requests and how to field calls from reporters (“It should be a red flag when: Reporters ask for your personal opinion. Answer: ‘It doesn’t matter what I think. What is important is...’”, etc).
In 2008, after Perry had been in office for eight years, Nielsen-Gammon told the Current that he had made a single attempt to contact Perry in the hopes of briefing him on climate change — an approach that was apparently rebuffed. Nielsen-Gammon and the rest of the scientists at Perry’s alma mater are of one mind on the climate change, at odds with Perry’s coached ignorance now on display. While Nielsen-Gammon’s tutelage is obviously in dire need, he told the Current last week he hasn’t made a second attempt to educate the governor. In fact, he now says he doesn’t even remember offering to educate Perry the first time. That’s 11 years wasted … or worse, if Perry rises to the White House.
Doggett versus Castro (by way of Perry)
Hoping to keep Perry firmly planted in Texas is Austin-based U.S. Rep Lloyd Doggett. The Austin-based Dem held his own rally aimed at introducing the nation to “the real Rick Perry” the same day the Governor dove headfirst into his Houston prayer rally, an event that captivated the media and stoked national interest in a Perry candidacy.