Conservatives hate the environment and would like nothing better than to see the world burn — at least, that’s the view pushed by many on the left.
After President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of the controversial and expensive Paris accord, for instance, liberals and the media slammed the right as an enemy of the earth.
But it turns out that America can take positive environmental steps without needing agreements that are barely-disguised wealth transfer schemes.
On Thursday, according to The Daily Caller, Trump signed the “Save Our Seas Act” into law, taking a major step to cleaning up debris that is increasingly clogging the oceans.
Unlike some proposals, however, the legislation doesn’t make the United States out as the sole culprit when it comes to trash.
“As president I will continue to do everything I can to stop other nations from making our oceans into their landfills. That’s why I’m pleased – very pleased, I must say – to put my signature on this important legislation,” the president declared.
One of the key parts of the law extends NOAA’s Marine Debris Program for half a decade, while also promoting international efforts to clean up marine trash. Republicans and Democrats briefly set aside their differences to pass the bill, with strong support from both sides.
“This waste, trash and debris harms not only marine life, but also fisherman, coastal economies along America’s vast stretches. The bad news is it floats toward us,” Trump commented.
“Every year, over 8 million tons of garbage is dumped into our beautiful oceans by many countries of the world. That includes China, that includes Japan, that includes many, many countries,” he continued.
That’s a very important point: While the left loves to scold Americans and paint the country as a shameful environmental offender, the U.S. actually does rather well when it comes to protecting the environment.
Other nations, not so much.
“The U.S. barely makes the list of plastic offenders. There are eleven countries with worse ocean pollution records, and all of them are developing nations. Of the top twelve plastic waste sources, the United States is responsible for a mere one percent of the problem,” as we previously reported.
Plastic refuse in the oceans has gained public awareness due to several viral videos circulating online, which show dramatic “plastic islands” of debris that have clumped together.
During his remarks at the signing of the “Save Our Seas Act,” President Trump scolded past presidents for doing “absolutely nothing” about the issue, and promised that things would be changing.
As the administration has just shown, there’s a big difference between keeping the U.S. out of expensive and ineffective schemes — like the Paris accord — and taking smart steps to keep our world clean.
Looking out for America’s interests and promoting conservation are not mutually exclusive. Environmentalism just has to be done in a way that makes sense in the real world.
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