Texas Fights to Stay a Dirty Energy State

posted by scott parkin

Coal smokestack“The corporations don’t have to lobby the government anymore. They are the government.
-Jim Hightower

I can’t say enough about the fact that my home state of Texas is becoming the next battlefield in the country’s dirty energy wars.

A follow up to my “Deep in the Heart of Dirty Energy and False Solutions” blog posted last month is in order, as Texas has filed a lawsuit to defy the EPA’s new carbon rules. And now a Federal Appeals Court has sided with Texas and dirty industry!

Do we need more affirmation that Corporate America rules our government and our legal system?

Those oily Texas politicians that pimp for dirty energy’s corporate machine are challenging the EPA’s authority to enforce permits on factories and electricity-generating plants that emit a lot of greenhouse gases. Texas is the only state nationwide that has avoided the Obama Administration’s new greenhouse gas regulations that came into effect this week. The legal fight is just beginning and the EPA expects to be in court in the coming weeks with a response.

Republicans took over both houses in the Texas state legislature with whopping majorities in November. Meanwhile, Rick Perry is the longest-serving governor in state history, is a darling of the right wing Tea Party movement, and is in the pocket of Big Oil and Coal. The Texas Tea Party is large and fanatical. Big Oil, Big Coal, Natural Gas and lots of false solutions companies are running amok.

Big Oil and Big Coal own our political system. The politicians have appointed right wing judges to affirm corporate power.

So this begs a bigger question: Who is going to stand up to them? It’s time to challenge corporate power in Texas in the courts, the legislatures, and the streets. Lucy Parsons, Jim Hightower, Molly Ivins and many more have all been outspoken rabble-rousers from Texas. San Antonio, Austin, Houston and Dallas-Ft. Worth all have built progressive, radical and clean energy consciousness. Growing population demographics will be shifting the political spectrum — which is why the GOP and their corporate benefactors are fighting so hard to maintain the status quo.

Texas is not necessarily the right wing bastion every thinks it is, and it definitely won’t be in the future, but urgency around greenhouse gas emissions and environmental justice requires people, networks and movements to arise now.

It’s time to get off Facebook and make some trouble.