03.26.2015 1

Obama’s FEMA puts climate ideology over saving lives


By Rick Manning

New Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) rules on requirements for states to receive federal emergency preparedness dollars are being met with disbelief by many of the nation’s governors.  The new rule forces a state to include a “consideration of changing environmental or climate conditions that may affect and influence the long-term vulnerability from hazards in the state” in conducting risk assessments.

FEMA continues by holding out what it considers to be an olive branch to the states saying it “recognizes there exists inherent uncertainty about future conditions, and will work with states to identify tools and approaches that enable decision-making to reduce risks and increase resilience from a changing climate.”

But Governor Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, where he has presided over the final part of the Hurricane Katrina recovery and weathered the BP oil spill emergency, is not taking kindly to the politicization of public safety.

The Washington Times reports that Jindal reacted forcefully against the rules stating that FEMA emergency preparedness funding “prepares families and communities for national disasters.”

Yet that is exactly what the Obama Administration is doing.  Emergency preparedness funds are spent to equip local first responders, state and local emergency management centers, and educate the public about potentially life-saving steps that they can take in an emergency. Yet, somehow, the Obama Administration is choosing to discriminate in the dissemination of these dollars based upon the governor of the state’s views on climate change and its impact.

With Atlantic Ocean states from Florida to North Carolina, Gulf Coast states from Texas to Florida, and Tornado Alley states all politically conservative with governors who don’t worship at the President’s climate change altar, FEMA is effectively choosing to withhold funds from the states that are most likely to need it.

If FEMA doesn’t rescind the rule and continues to contend that those states that are most likely to face natural disasters on a regular basis should be denied funding because they won’t bend on the climate change issue, then Congress must step in.

In FEMA’s 2016 appropriation, Congress must tell FEMA that climate change preparedness shall not be a consideration for eligibility for federal emergency preparedness funding.

The state of Louisiana faced the worst natural disaster in the past decade, and no one knows better about the importance of preparation than Governor Jindal, when he reminds, “This preparation saves lives.

“The White House should not use it for political leverage to force acquiescence to their left-wing ideology.”

Amen, Governor Jindal, I could not have said it better myself.

The author is President of Americans for Limited Government.

Copyright © 2008-2022 Americans for Limited Government