Rick Santorum calls climate change a “hoax” and “a beautifully concocted scheme.” For months, he lingered on the sidelines of a crowded GOP field. Now his victories in Colorado, Missouri, and Minnesota have turned Santorum into a real contender in the Republican race to the White House.
It’s time voters learned the truth behind Santorum’s claims.
And as we head into Super Tuesday, we are calling on you to help spread the word that when it comes to energy and the environment, Santorum tends to side with fiction instead of fact.
Take climate change. Santorum told Rush Limbaugh that the left had manufactured climate change as “an excuse for more government control of your life.” On the campaign trail, he’s called climate change a “façade” and “an absolute travesty of scientific research.”
The truth? The vast majority of scientists who study climate – ninety-seven percent – agree that global warming is real and primarily caused by humans. The National Academy of Sciences, NASA, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and many other esteemed institutions concur.
Even longtime skeptic Dr. Richard Muller recently released a study – funded in part by the polluting Koch Brothers — saying temperature data confirm the Earth is warming. Former deniers are finally accepting the evidence. But Santorum still acts like the Earth is flat.
He shows a similar disregard for reality on other issues as well. He claims President Obama has led “a war on fossil fuels in this country.”
The truth? Energy companies drilled almost 21,000 oil wells in the first eight months of 2011 — the highest number in almost 30 years. America’s overall oil production is the highest it’s been in eight years, and President Obama has called for opening more than 75 percent of U.S offshore oil and gas resources. So much for an assault on the fossil fuels industry.
Santorum also uses fuzzy math when talking about the Keystone XL pipeline for dirty tar sands oil. His website claims the project “would create 20,000 jobs.”
The truth? Even representatives from the pipeline company acknowledged that the project will only generate “hundreds” of permanent jobs. Meanwhile, independent researchers at Cornell University estimated the pipeline would create as few as 2,500 short-term jobs, and the State Department forecast between 5,000 and 6,000 short-term jobs.
During the many months Santorum sat in the wings, few people heard his faulty figures. Now that he has been pushed into the spotlight, his claims are reaching more ears. And now that he is one of the final contenders standing, the stakes are higher.
In the race for the White House, policies and ideologies should be debated, but the facts must not.
Help us set the record straight. Share these facts about climate change, energy development, and the Keystone XL pipeline with your friends and online community.
Thanks for everything you do,
NRDC Action Fund