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Climate Change postponed in North Carolina
The North Carolina coast after Hurricane Irene last year
July 6th, 2012
04:41 PM ET

Climate Change postponed in North Carolina

By John Sepulvado, CNN

(CNN) – The North Carolina legislature decided this week to ignore climate change data… for now.  The move comes after successful lobbying by a group called NC 20, which represents economic interests along the coast like real estate developers.

After a panel of climate scientists recommended that North Carolina coastal areas plan for a 3 foot rise in sea level by the year 2100, NC 20 set out to counter the science. The group says it’s an economic threat to the coast.

"I'll admit we're biased to protect ourselves," says Tom Thompson, who heads up NC 20. "All we're looking for is a reason to resist investing millions and millions of dollars and we're finding those reasons." [7:41]

NC 20 fears building and insurance cost would go up and Republican state lawmakers got the message.

"Our climate runs on a cycle. It goes up and it goes down and the lord designed it that way," Republican Larry Pittman told his colleagues in the state house. "And the main thing that causes global warning is the earth's relationship to a big ball of gas out there that we call the sun." [6:15]

On the last day of the session, lawmakers voted 68 to 46 to postpone any recommendation for coastal planning and asked for a new study on sea level rise by 2015.

"I will be voting NO along with Galileo." said Democratic State Representative Jennifer Weiss, who called the lobbying efforts an attempt to discredit science. [6:46]

The bill is now with Democratic Governor Beverly Perdue who has not decided whether to veto the legislation.

soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. ElectricLion

    As Londo Mollari (Peter Jurasik) said in Babylon 5, "Ah, arrogance and stupidity, all in the same package. How efficient."

    July 10, 2012 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Nate

    This isn't a debate about evolution or religion. Just greed and stupidity.

    We don't want to face reality-so we make it illegal to talk about reality.

    I bet these are the same hypocrites who defend money (bribes) in politics as freedom of speech.

    July 10, 2012 at 8:04 am | Report abuse |
  3. Rob Mosby

    Bad combination of stupidity and greed. The generations of red neck inbreeding is finially showing up. Do they even have schools in that state, if so does anyone go to them?

    July 9, 2012 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Rob Mosby

    Galieo voted no only after the Pope threatened to burn him at the stake

    July 9, 2012 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
  5. George

    Can we please fix this in November, North Carolina? Especially the quote from Republican Larry Pittman proves that religion is a problem and that voting people who think like this into government causes serious issues. ”Our climate runs on a cycle. It goes up and it goes down and the lord designed it that way.”

    Save it for the church, please, and keep your nonsense out of science and government. I can’t wait to hear what they say when our coast is ruined by dramatic sea level increases. Unfortunately for schadenfreude but fortunately for these so-called civil servants, they’ll likely all be long dead by then.

    July 9, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  6. John Higgins

    where do the people of NC find these guys? They will be surprised to learn that the Earth is round.. That we have had men on the moon and that humans have evolved ... well maybe ...

    July 9, 2012 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |