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GM Urges Obama, Congress to Unite on Climate Change

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By Suzanne Goldenberg, The Guardian

General Motors called on Barack Obama and Congress to work together on climate change, saying the effort would be good for business.

GM, which makes the plug-in Chevy Volt, was the first of the big three car makers to sign on to a new push from the business world for greater action on global warming from Washington, the Climate Declaration.

GM said in a statement: 'We want to be a change agent in the auto industry.' 
Credit: flickr/harry_nl

"We want to be a change agent in the auto industry," Mike Robinson, GM vice-president of sustainability and global regulatory affairs, said in a statement.

The declaration, now endorsed by 40 companies, was launched in Washington last month with the aim of capitalizing on public concern about climate change after Hurricane Sandy and Obama's re-election in the hope of pushing a climate law through Congress.

More than half of Americans now blame climate change for the extreme weather of recent years, according to a study released on Wednesday by the Yale Project on Climate Change.

The short statement, endorsed by GM, leads off: "Tacking climate change is America's greatest economic opportunity of the 21st century (and it's simply the right thing to do)."

It does not prescribe specific solutions beyond a "co-ordinated effort," but said that promoting clean energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions would help America remain a superpower.

The effort was guided by Ceres, the sustainable business network, which argued that declarations of support from the business world could give members of Congress the cover they needed to engage on a topic widely seen as a third rail in politics.

Obama began his second term pledging action on climate change. But Congress was unmoved by his appeal in his state of the union address to work on a law that would cut the greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change.

GM, which makes the plug-in Chevy Volt, was the first of the big three car makers to sign on to a new push from the business world for greater action on global warming from Washington, the Climate Declaration.
Credit: flickr/Dave Pinter

A majority of Republicans oppose action on climate change, or discount the science behind climate change.

Aside from GM, the effort was endorsed by household names such as Starbucks, Intel, and eBay, as well as a number of outdoor clothing manufacturers.

The announcement caps a steady transformation of GM's market strategy.

A company which once produced gas-guzzling trucks and SUVs and fought higher fuel economy standards was now identifying with the green technology behind a car like the Volt.

Before signing on to the Climate Declaration, GM had been pressing the Obama administration to adopt a national energy policy, promoting natural gas and renewables.

GM has also been working for energy-savings on its manufacturing line,. The company said it now operated two of the world's biggest solar power arrays.

Reprinted with permission from The Guardian

Comments

By mememine69
on May 5th, 2013

When lazy copy and paste media, corporations, lab coat consultants and politicians all agree on the same thing, be suspect not obedient.
Be a real progressive and question this CO2 death threat to our children.

Reply to this comment

By Eric Peterson (Front Royal, VA 22630)
on May 6th, 2013

“Aside from GM, the effort was endorsed by household names such as Starbucks, Intel, and eBay, as well as a number of outdoor clothing manufacturers.”

Outdoor clothing most likely made in China.  As for Intel and eBay, they are both part of a major trend to get more productivity and efficiency out of less energy.  The GM effort may result in efficient products at some point in the future.  For now they are simply lobbying for subsidies for their Volt product which, judging from the retail price, is not energy efficient.

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By Kevin
on May 6th, 2013

In response to mememine69 ... “When 97 out of 100 doctors tell you you’ve got serious heart disease caused by eating breakfast at McDonalds, lunch at Burger King, and dinner at Wendy’s 7 days a week ... and when 2 of the 3 doctors who disagree with that assessment are funded by a right-wing group that gets 99% of its’ funding from the fast food industry ... be a real progressive and question those 97 doctors…”

That is what *you* would do, isn’t it?!?

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By dan_in_illinois
on May 7th, 2013

Wow!  This is rich.  A company that takes billions from taxpayers to prop up their loser products turns around and tells the people from whom the money was confiscated that they need to listen up and do things their way.

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