Once again, concerns about the environment and climate change have been put on hold. All the usual excuses are given. It’s an election year. The votes aren’t there. Try again some other time.

All those are true enough, but the real culprit is the will is simply not there, among the people who count. The people who make the decisions.

Until the country’s – and the world’s – decision makers become genuinely concerned about the environment, until they recognize the importance of these issues, nothing will happen.

Industry, big business, special interests have all successfully managed to marginalize the environmental voice. The steady drumbeat warning of higher taxes, lost jobs, etc., have turned the calls for action into a squeak.

Even as they tally up the toll from the BP oil spill, there’s talk about approving drilling in the Arctic. Mountaintop mining has not yet been taken off the table, hydraulic fracturing to get at shale oil goes on practically unabated.

What can we do? Demand that our candidates spell out their attitudes towards these issues , in the same way other demand to know how they stand on abortion, gun control. Don’t let them off the hook. And don’t let the media off the hook. Demand that they do their jobs, that they ask the hard questions, and explain the issues.

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