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2002-04-23

"Clear Skies," Or No Skies? The Bush Administration and Earth Day

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Yesterday was Earth Day. To mark the occasion, Former oil executive President Bush spent the day in the acid-rain-plagued Adirondack Mountains to sell his "Clear Skies" initiative. The plan is a market-based approach to reducing pollutants. Environmental groups warn that the plan would be a step backward from goals set by Clean Air Act regulations already on the books.

But over the weekend, the Bush administration succeeded in ousting the head of the UN-sponsored Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Robert Watson. Watson is an outspoken critic of Bush’s energy policy.

Controversy had mired the meeting since it was revealed the US State Department was supporting Watson’s ouster. That controversy turned to outrage when the Natural Resources Defense Council uncovered a memo from the US oil corporation Exxon Mobil asking the White House to unseat Watson. Exxon Mobil was a major contributor to Bush’s election campaign.

Guest:

  • David Doniger, policy director, Natural Resources Defense Council’s Climate Center.

Related link:

Musical guest:

  • Matt Jones, singer, civil rights activist, and composer Matt Jones, a member of the Freedom Singers.

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