Year 3, Month 4, Day 9: Little Deuce Coupe

General Motors is now a certified left-wing tree-hugger (The Boise Weekly):

The Heartland Institute, a conservative think tank that promotes denial of climate change, lost funding from General Motors last week. The Los Angeles Times reports that a leak of confidential funding documents showed that the General Motors Foundation provided funds to the institute during the last two years.

“GM operates its business as if climate change is real,” said GM spokesman Greg Martin.

The move received immediate praise from environmental groups.

“We applaud GM’s decision and the message it sends—that it is no longer acceptable for corporations to promote the denial of climate change,” said Daniel Souweine, campaign director for Forecast the Facts, a group that urges meteorologists to talk more openly about climate change. “Support for an organization like Heartland is not in line with GM’s values.”

It’s about eleven meta-levels away from actual good news, but I’ll take what I can get. Sent April 2:

In pulling its funding from the anti-science Heartland Institute, General Motors is demonstrating readiness to engage with the factual realities of climate change. While nobody enjoys contemplating a civilizational threat of such magnitude, the evidence of impending drastic alterations of the Earth’s climate is now so irrefutable that denialist posturing is morally, environmentally and fiscally irresponsible.

Since Americans’ love affair with their cars shows no sign of ending, it’s imperative that the automobile industry recognize the urgency of the crisis and begin developing newer, less wasteful technologies — a move that General Motors seems to be making.

Heartland Institute, by contrast, is doubling down, rejecting unambiguous science in favor of ideologically convenient misinterpretations that support the profitability of their funders. GM’s decision to sever ties with this secretive right-wing think tank reflects a deeper understanding of a simple fact: a global climate catastrophe would be terrible for business.

Warren Senders

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