Wednesday, November 5, 2008

It's a whole new world, hopefully...

Obama: the post-environmental president
What does the election mean for climate change and energy policy?
by Adam Stein – November 5, 2008

There’s been a bit of chatter in recent weeks about whether an Obama victory would truly be as transformative as many progressives hope and expect. Some have quietly suggested that nothing in Obama’s record, temperament, or platform should make us expect dramatic gestures. They say that those who think otherwise are letting the man’s remarkable personal story cloud their judgment of his governing philosophy, or discounting the extent to which every president is constrained by Congress.

There’s something to this, and ultimately any president’s legacy is determined as much by events as by his or her personal qualities. That said, I think that Obama’s presidency has a good chance of being a transformative one, particularly in the area of climate and energy. Circumstances have delivered up a set of interlinked crises — economic, environmental, and security-related — at just the moment that we’ve elected a person who seems to fully grasp the scope of the problem and the proper shape of the solution.

Obama has often been referred to as the first post-racial politician. When we someday evaluate his tenure, we may come to see him instead as the first post-environmental president, the leader who was able to connect the dots on energy, the economy, and security in way that elevates these issues above narrow interest group concerns and places them at the center of the political agenda.

Read the rest of the article HERE.