NO ADVERTISING, GOVERNMENT OR CORPORATE FUNDING
DONATE TODAY


  September 19, 2013

Obama's Climate Change Policies Are Imperialistic and Despotic


Pt 2: Subhankar Banerjee: The Obama administration's focus on oil extraction and emphasis on fracking is not addressing climate change
Members don't see ads. If you are a member, and you're seeing this appeal, click here
   



audio

Share to Facebook Share to Twitter



I support this network as contributors are allowed the time to develop their arguments - CM
Log in and tell us why you support TRNN


biography

Subhankar Banerjee is an environmental humanities scholar and activist. Over the past thirteen years he has worked tirelessly for the conservation of ecoculturally significant areas of the Arctic, and to raise awareness about indigenous human rights and climate change. He has also been focusing on climate change impacts in the desert southwest. He founded ClimateStoryTellers.org, and is editor of the anthology Arctic Voices: Resistance at the Tipping Point (Seven Stories Press). He was recently Director's Visitor at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, Distinguished Visiting Professor at Fordham University in New York, received Distinguished Alumnus Award from the New Mexico State University, and Cultural Freedom Award from Lannan Foundation.


transcript

Obama's Climate Change Policies Are Imperialistic and DespoticJAISAL NOOR, TRNN PRODUCER: Welcome to The Real News Network. I'm Jaisal Noor in Baltimore.

We're continuing our conversation with Shubhankar Banerjee. He's a photographer, writer, and activist, upcoming book Arctic Voices: Resistance at the Tipping Point.

So, Shubhankar, we talked about the floods in Colorado, the link to climate change. Can you talk about what the Obama administration's role has been in addressing climate change? He's been praised for actually being a president that's linked climate change to human activity. But what's his relationship been with the environmental movement? And have his policies actually addressed the roots of climate change?

SHUBHANKAR BANERJEE, ENVIRONMENTAL HUMANITIES SCHOLAR AND ACTIVIST: President Obama released his climate plan in this past June. And some have--some seem to believe that President Obama does have a climate plan. But the way--the reality shows--and I have been writing about it for several years now--is that the only plan that he has and has been following and pursuing and implementing is the one that was introduced in 2008 by Michael Steele, the former chairman of the Republican national party, and later made infamous by Sarah Palin, is drill, baby, drill. And President Obama essentially has been faithfully implementing Sarah Palin's climate plan. Nothing has been going on.

And, in fact, what I have pointed out is that America is turning into a petro-imperial and petro-despot state. I say petro-imperial because the American foreign policy to get oil that we have done in the Middle East, in Nigeria, and other places is now being applied here in North America, Obama and Harper in tandem. And that's the imperial part.

And then there is a despotic part, where the administration has been ignoring signs and ignoring the concerns of indigenous people and the rural communities. So it actually--the war is now against indigenous communities and rural communities in North America to push unprecedented drilling in the Arctic Ocean, an issue that I have been focusing on for the last 13 years. The administration violated the National Environmental Policy Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act, ignored all concerns of the indigenous communities, and allowed Shell to begin drilling in the Arctic Ocean last year, exploratory drilling, the most dangerous form of drilling anywhere.

Now you look at fracking, which is actually a tragedy in Colorado right now, because more than 1,000 fracking wells have been flooded and a lot of those fracking crudes coming out. And we just heard today that even nuclear contamination is going on in Colorado right now. So there is fracking going on all across the country. The administration has supported a sale of and actually did sell coal in Wyoming, the Powder River Basin. And if you--and then extreme deep water drilling will happen now in the Gulf of Mexico, because Shell announced earlier this year that they'll drill at a depth of 10,000 feet now. And the Deepwater Horizon was about 5,000 feet.

NOOR: Now, Shubhankar, so supporters of President Obama would say that, you know, he is confined by the political reality, lack of public support, and the Republicans, who will not back any real climate change initiatives. What's your response to people that say that President Obama is doing is much as he can?

BANERJEE: That is absolutely not true, because you just mentioned the public. The public, as polls after poll show, are deeply concerned about climate change, and support, actually, public policy to address climate change.

And you brought up the Republican. Republican leadership of course has been horrible. Bush was the oil president, and then Obama is following in his heels. But the public--even the Republicans that Chris Williams, the author of Ecology and Socialism, pointed out in an article that I published on climate[incompr.].org is that even some 70 percent Republicans are actually in support, do now understand and believe climate change and do support public policy to address it.

So it's the politicians in cahoots with the corporations are causing this destructive thing. It has nothing to do with the public. The public, the majority of American public now support climate change, understands climate change, both Republicans and Democrats. It is the politicians from both parties and in bed with the corporations are causing this trouble.

NOOR: Shubhankar Banerjee, thank you so much for joining us.

BANERJEE: Thank you, Jaisal.

NOOR: Thank you for joining us on The Real News Network.

End

DISCLAIMER: Please note that transcripts for The Real News Network are typed from a recording of the program. TRNN cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.



Comments

Our automatic spam filter blocks comments with multiple links and multiple users using the same IP address. Please make thoughtful comments with minimal links using only one user name. If you think your comment has been mistakenly removed please email us at contact@therealnews.com

latest stories

Standing Rock and the Struggle Against Corporate Power
Greece's Debt Relief Conundrum
Argentina's President Macri Faces Increasing Scandals and Resistance to His Return to Neoliberalism
The Blue State Where Progressive Reforms go to Die
Trump's Job Promises are Fiction - Free Trade is Fiction, Too
The Bizarre Far-Right Billionaire Behind Bannon and Trump's Presidency
In Sharp Contrast with Flynn, Trump Appoints Establishment Figure to NSC
Trump Wants to Defeat ISIS By Using Policies that Gave Rise to It
Whistleblower Teacher Says Defunded Public Schools Vulnerable to Mass Privatization
Sentencing of Israeli Soldier for Killing of Palestinian Exposes Contradictions of Occupation
Trump's Turn from Two-State Solution Sows Crisis for Fatah, Hamas
Ecuador Elections Appear Headed Towards Run-off
Cultivating Social Justice Work in West Baltimore
Empire Files: President Correa on His Legacy & Critics
Baltimore Students Push For Statewide Styrofoam Ban
Survey Shows Support Growing For Palestinians Among Canadians
X: Malcolm's Final Years
Steve Bannon Allies with Catholic Theo-Fascism Against Pope Francis (2/2)
Would Keith Ellison Pursue Reconciliation or Lead Insurgency Within DNC?
Ecuador's Presidential Election is the "Stalingrad" of Latin America's Left
How E.U.'s Migration Policy Enables Migrant Smuggling
Trumponomics: Empowering Proto-Fascists
Pope Francis Calls for Broad Front Against Tyranny and Savage Capitalism (1/2)
The Real Baltimore: Maryland Democrats Consider Blocking Cities From Raising Their Minimum Wage
TRNN Replay: Confronting Financialization on Steroids - Costas Lapavitsas on Reality Asserts Itself (8/8)
Court Rules Newly Confirmed EPA Head Must Release Thousands of Emails
A Day Without Immigrants: Thousands Hold Boycotts and Demonstrations Against Trump
Trump and Netanyahu Acknowledge the Death of the Two-State Solution
The Real Baltimore: Should Baltimore Raise its Minimum Wage to $15/HR by 2022?
IMF Lent to Greece Knowing It Could Never Pay Back Debt

TheRealNewsNetwork.com, RealNewsNetwork.com, The Real News Network, Real News Network, The Real News, Real News, Real News For Real People, IWT are trademarks and service marks of Independent World Television inc. "The Real News" is the flagship show of IWT and The Real News Network.

All original content on this site is copyright of The Real News Network. Click here for more

Problems with this site? Please let us know

Managed Wordpress Hosting