Energy & Environment

Sanders accuses Clinton of ‘incrementalism’ on climate change

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Bernie Sanders excoriated Hillary Clinton for her positions on fracking and climate change at Thursday’s presidential debate in New York — a state that has banned hydraulic fracturing.

Sanders accused Clinton of favoring policies that increase fracking.

{mosads}“The truth is, as secretary of State, Secretary Clinton actively supported fracking technology around the world,” Sanders said, pointing to the Obama administration’s efforts to encourage fracking in an effort to reduce coal use and increase countries’ energy independence.

He said Clinton’s climate policies would do little to address global warming, in contrast to his calls for a tax on carbon dioxide emissions and an end to all new fossil fuel extraction leases on federal lands and offshore.

The Vermont senator also repeated his charge that Clinton has accepted too much money from the fossil fuel industry to be able to fight it effectively.

“This is a difference between understanding that we have a crisis of historical consequence here, and incrementalism and those little steps are not enough. Not right now, not on climate change,” Sanders said, to audience cheers.

He repeatedly tried to get Clinton to say whether she supports a carbon tax, which she did not directly answer.

Clinton cited her role in the State Department on climate diplomacy as her main climate change credential, saying she “worked with President Obama to bring China and India to the table for the very first time, to get a commitment out of them that they would begin to address their own greenhouse gas emissions,” which led to last year’s Paris climate agreement.

As for Sanders’s positions like ending fossil fuel leasing on public land, Clinton said they’re not going to pass through Congress.

Instead, she said she’d push to defend and build on policies like the Clean Power Plan and work to increase the use of renewable energy.

“I want to do what we can do to actually make progress in dealing with the crisis,” she said. “That’s exactly what I have proposed, and my approach, I think, is going to get us there without tying us up into political knots with a Congress that still would not support what you are proposing.”


Tags Bernie Sanders Climate change Global warming Hillary Clinton
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