Jimmy Carter Blasts ‘Nutcases’ Who Block Climate Action

Former President Jimmy Carter, in Aspen to receive a lifetime achievement award at the American Renewable Energy Day summit, pointed to “nutcases” who deny climate change,money in political campaigns and a Republican Party bent on blocking anything proposed by President Obama as obstacles to bringing the U.S. up to the renewable energy level of other developed countries.

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“We still have a tremendous opportunity to do what we haven’t done. I would say the biggest handicap we have right now is some nutcases in our country who don’t believe in global warming. Photo credit: Shutterstock

The now 89-year-old president created the Department of Energy and was known as an advocate for energy conservation and environmental protection years before the term “climate change” had entered the general public consciousness.

But, he said at the summit, “The country was not divided into red and blue states then. Money didn’t completely control the campaigns for Congress and president. I believe almost anything President Obama advocates, Congress is going to oppose.”

He praised initiatives Obama is taking, such as considering new rules to force states to reduce carbon emissions by 30 percent by the year 2030, adding, “I was a bit disappointed he took a wait and see approach during his first five or six years in office, but he’s moving now.”

He mentioned that Canada now gets 60 percent of its energy from renewable sources.

“The United States is right at the bottom, with only 10 percent of our energy coming from renewable sources,” he said. “So we still have a tremendous opportunity to do what we haven’t done. I would say the biggest handicap we have right now is some nutcases in our country who don’t believe in global warming. I think that they are going to change their position because the evidence of the ravages of global warming is coming or is already there.”

While Carter lamented the big donations from sources such as fossil fuel moguls the Koch brothers pouring into the coffers of candidates and officeholders who oppose action on climate change or even deny it’s real, as long as that money is flowing, environmentalist billionaire Tom Steyer of NextGen is devoted to raising money to combat it. He was at the Aspen summit to encourage like-minded activists to put some skin in the game as well, supporting environmentally friendly candidates such as Colorado Senator Mark Udall.

“The ultimate question will be will we have enough money to run the programs that we think are necessary in these races,” Steyer said at the summit. “The answer is definitely yes.”

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    • Lucy Howard

      Good for Jimmy Carter!

    • Jerry Fischer

      The “Nutcase” here, is Jimmy Carter.

    • ron davison

      I think there is an is unfortunate assumption, in this statement IMO.
      If he had said,
      People acting like nut-jobs and perceived as such by most all that have taken the time to learn the issues from peer reviewed sources, are co-opting those most vulnerable to being persuaded to their cause of delaying modern cost effective solutions to Global Weather Extremes.
      These people that know better, acting out of greed of saving the pig trough of wastage that they own a monopoly on, or the foot shoulders they hire to do their bidding will be viewed as criminals in history for creating and extending unneeded future misery.

    • ron davison

      My below statement reflects my belief we can’t stop the delaying, by polarizing the issue further it mirrors what the monopoly owners are doing to protect their monopoly.
      This is natural human nature to protect ones turf.
      The fact is we can only fix this 1% or 2% per year on average without giving these monopoly a soft exit with their capitol.
      growth in developing countries outstrips this small % gain by factors of 2 to 10:1
      We know it needs to be 10x these single digit % to really make the difference in a few decades.
      To put it bluntly,
      Lets not mirror stupid with stupid.