Sen. Biden Issues Statement on Climate Change in Observance of Earth Day
Senator Biden issued the following statement in observance of Earth Day, April 22, 2007:
"Climate change, the first truly global environmental threat, is now upon us. The most recent scientific reports, and most recent reports on its effects, are convincing and disturbing. We have treated our atmosphere as a costless dump for the waste gases that are the byproduct of our great wealth. If we do nothing to fight climate change now, our children will inherit not just a ruined landscape, but a world of conflict as well.
"This week, the Center for Naval Analyses published a damning report, based on the military analysis of a dozen accomplished retired generals and admirals, concluding that climate change poses a serious threat to global security. Over the coming decades, CNA predicts that massive natural disasters and rapidly spreading infectious diseases will surpass the ability of governments to manage potentially multiple simultaneous crises. As a result, this could not only lead to instability in other regions, but draw the United States and our allies into protracted conflicts and reconstruction operations. This report makes the dire environmental, economic, and political consequences of global warming undeniably clear.
"That's why I have joined Senator Lugar to urge the President to return the United States to a leadership role in international climate change negotiations. Along with our bipartisan supporters, we call for United States participation in negotiations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change - signed by the first President Bush - that will protect the economic and security interests of the United States, and that will commit all nations - developed and developing - that are major emitters of greenhouse gases to achieve significant long-term reductions in those emissions.
"For more than two decades, I have supported efforts to address the problem of global warming. Debt-for-Nature swaps I created with Senator Lugar have provided tens of millions of dollars over the last decade and a half to developing nations, to protect tropical rainforests that are critical to the global climate. Here at home, we need a national system to cap our greenhouse gas emissions, rewarding U.S. companies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. With the right incentives, our economy can grow by creating new products and technologies - and jobs - for a clean-energy future.
"The CNA report makes clear that the price of inaction on climate change is far too great. I believe that our nation has to be a leader on this matter; we owe that to ourselves, to our fellow nations and, most importantly, to future generations."