Not only will Florence begin making its effects felt on Thursday, but two more major storms are lingering in the Atlantic Ocean bringing the potential of more severe weather to the United States. As is typical protocol in advance of approaching hurricanes, the military has been proactive about preparing the area for a worst-case scenario.
While storm preparation and rescue is part of the job description for military members, it still does not make it any easier for these servicemen and servicewomen to be away from their own families during such anxious times. The tireless work of the military to fulfill their duties of service to the country is a reminder that our nation is not yet fully equipped to handle the devastating effects of climate change. While the country had made progress in recent years to address the issue through a series of bipartisan initiatives, the administration of President Donald Trump continues to negate this progress.
This is not fake news. Climate change is real and the Trump administration needs to stop turning a blind eye to the issue. It is hypocritical to order the military to prepare for the onslaught of Florence while proposing legislation to make it easier for energy entities to release harmful methane into the air. Yet that is exactly what Trump did this week.
Warmer ocean water brought about by human-induced actions is the root of this problem, encouraging the formation of more numerous and stronger storms. Not only do these storms result in the loss of life, but they also cost the federal government billions of dollars. The estimated cost of last year’s relief efforts for Hurricanes Harvey, Maria, and Irma was approximately $265 billion.
When examining the facts, it becomes clear that climate change poses a serious national security risk. This is why it is imperative that as a country, we continue to focus our efforts on reversing the effects of climate change. The Trump administration still has time to spearhead this change and get this right for future generations of Americans and for the world.