Quantcast

Yes, GOP Presidential Candidate John Kasich Believes in Climate Change, But...

Politics

Seriously, at this point, it's hard to keep track. It seems like every other day another Republican is announcing his or her bid for the White House. Ohio Gov. John Kasich officially announced his bid as a presidential candidate today in Columbus, Ohio, making him the 16th Republican in the 2016 race.

Kasich actually believes in climate change unlike far too many of his fellow candidates. "I happen to believe there is a problem with climate change," he told The Hill. "I don't want to overreact to it, I can't measure it all, but I respect the creation that the Lord has given us and I want to make sure we protect it."

But don't mistake him for a climate warrior. He holds the dubious distinction of making Ohio the first state to freeze its renewable portfolio standard (RPS), which, before being stalled, had created 25,000 jobs and spurred at least $1 billion in private sector investments.

Here's how successful the program was, according to Think Progress:

In less than six years, Ohio’s RPS saved consumers roughly $230 million and dropped electricity rates by almost a percent and a half. The efficiency measures that were also frozen had saved ratepayers $1 billion, according to utility company filings. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the policies were supported by 70 percent of Ohioans.

Add to that the fact that last year two environmental groups sued Kasich for illegally making Ohio a fracking waste dump, and you quickly realize that his claims of environmental stewardship don't seem to hold up.

And then there's a recent video from a reporter at The Undercurrent. She asked Kasich at the Faith and Freedom Coalition's Road to Majority Conference last month if he "would agree with the Pope that climate change is a moral issue which we must address and take concrete action on?"

Kasich's response is less than exciting for those who recognize the urgent need to act on climate change. Kasich admits the environment "needs to be taken care of," but quickly cautions that "it shouldn't be worshipped," calling that "pantheism." And he goes on to say "the Pope saying we need to take care of the environment is good," but again, makes a caveat, saying "I don't agree with his conclusion that all of it is bad because of free enterprise because it's lifted people out of poverty and he cares about the poor and so do I. So, I mean a nice warning about people to think about the environment."

Kasich's statement about free enterprise is a quote right out of the Heartland Institute's climate denial textbook, claiming policies to mitigate climate change hurt the poor. According to the World Bank, that couldn't be more far from the truth. The World Bank debunked that myth when they said you can't fight poverty without tackling climate change, and that the world's poorest are most threatened by the effects of climate change.

The Undercurrent reporter followed up with: "So would you take legislative action?" Kasich's response: "Let's not get carried away."

Watch the full interview here:

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Mayors Flock to Vatican to Sign Pope Francis’ Climate Declaration

Hillary Dodges Questions on Climate, Keystone and Fracking in Facebook Q&A

8 Scheming Plans for ALEC in 2015 and Beyond

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Europe is bracing for a second heat wave in less than a month. TropicalTidbits.com

Europe is gearing up for another extreme heat wave that could set all-time records for several European countries.

Read More Show Less
Modern agricultural greenhouses in the Netherlands use LED lights to support plant growth. GAPS / iStock / Getty Images Plus

By Kevin M. Folta

A nighttime arrival at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport flies you over the bright pink glow of vegetable production greenhouses. Growing crops under artificial light is gaining momentum, particularly in regions where produce prices can be high during seasons when sunlight is sparse.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Golde Wallingford submitted this photo of "Pure Joy" to EcoWatch's first photo contest. Golde Wallingford

EcoWatch is pleased to announce our third photo contest!

Read More Show Less
On Oct. 4, 2017, the Senate EPW Committee held a hearing on Wehrum's nomination. EPA / YouTube screenshot

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) former head of the Office of Air and Radiation who was instrumental in drafting policies that eased climate protection rules and pollution standards is under investigation by a federal watchdog for his dealings with the fossil fuel industry he was supposed to be regulating, according to the New York Times.

Read More Show Less

It's no secret that the Trump administration has championed fossil fuels and scoffed at renewable energy. But the Trump administration is trying to keep something secret: the climate crisis. That's according to a new analysis from the watchdog group Environmental Data and Governance Initiative (EDGI) who found that more than a quarter of the references to climate change on .gov websites vanished.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Pexels

New York is officially the first state in the union to ban cat declawing.

Read More Show Less
People walk in the Shaw neighborhood on July 20 in Washington, DC, where an excessive heat warning was in effect according to the NWS. Alex Wroblewski / Getty Images

By Adrienne Hollis

Climate change is a threat multiplier. This is a fact I know to be true. I also know that our most vulnerable populations, particularly environmental justice communities — people of color and/or low socioeconomic status — are suffering and will continue to suffer first and worst from the adverse effects of climate change. Case in point? Extreme heat.

Read More Show Less
Pixabay

By Anne Danahy, MS, RDN

Coconut is the fruit of the coconut palm (Cocos nucifera).

Read More Show Less