By Ed Reynolds
Reynolds is retired from a global engineering and technology company. He has worked in the Roanoke city schools for the last eight years as a volunteer and substitute teacher. He lives in Roanoke.
The national media headlines read. ”After skepticism, U.S. Chamber of Commerce forms Climate-Change Task Force.” Holy smokes — and major wildfires, and killer hurricanes, and massive flooding, and continental droughts, and oceans rising, and diseases spreading globally, and major health issues abound — what in the world is going on???
That’s what the U.S. Chamber of Commerce decided it wanted to know, when it announced that it was forming a climate change task force to ascertain just how their members and consumer/customers are positively responding to the huge global challenge of mitigating the horrendous consequences to humanity and Mother Earth of rapidly advancing climate change.
Make no mistake: This is a bold and admirable response by the National Chamber of Commerce to this national climate change emergency.
Here’s a more urgent message to Barry DuVal, President and CEO Virginia Chamber, the Northam Administration and regional chambers across the state: Given the recent actions by your national chamber, yet shackled with your tone-deaf and vision-less unmitigated support of the private profit Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast Pipelines, it is regrettable that your organizations are clearly out-of-step with the global mobilization to fight the problem of our changing climate. Global implementation of “renewable energy” to replace fossil-fuels and their associated environmentally damaging pipeline infrastructure is the new energy economic redevelopment driver of our generation, yet your statewide chambers remain firmly lodged in the past, in lieu of embracing the state and region’s economic future. In doing so, your chambers have violated their trust and relationships with More than half of your consumer/customers (and business members) in Virginia, all for a spat of “new” jobs and nothing more for Virginians. If a straight-up vote were to be taken today, I would suggest your membership would readily dismiss the chamber’s support of these dangerous, and environmentally damaging pipelines, which have cast a long shadow on local member businesses and their respective local owners themselves.
Here’s the message: As with all big, bad, and untimely decisions, there is “one good road” out of this pipeline travesty. Acknowledge the science-driven global mobilization against the ongoing usage of fossil fuels and openly renounce the governor and the chambers’ unwavering, misdirected support of these pipelines and all other new stateside fossil fuel infrastructure now. There is no other logical, moral or ethical choice for all Virginia chambers on behalf of our precious children and grandchildren’s future health and well-being.