Martin O'Malley: 2016 Presidential candidate
Governor of Maryland promoted incinerators
and the Inter County Connector (Outer Beltway)
Martin O’Malley, long-shot presidential hopeful, is a real climate hawk
By Ben Adler on 8 Dec 2014
.... O’Malley is the rare elected official who seems genuinely motivated to address climate change. “I deal with a lot of politicians in my work as a climate advocate,” says Mike Tidwell, director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network. “Martin O’Malley, more than any politician I know, really loses sleep over climate change. He is deeply concerned about climate change and his actions over the last eight years reveal that. He’s pushed the envelope more than anyone I’ve seen. He’s the kind of politician where his staff comes in and says, ‘Here’s what we propose to do,’ and most politicians would say, ‘Let’s cut that down a little,’ and Martin O’Malley regularly says, ‘We can’t do better than that? Push a little harder?’”
and a comment from a reader:
B Shenanigans • 4 months ago
For goodness sake. Martin O'Smelley's environmental record is full of holes and so is this article.
*The Renewable Portfolio Scheme is one of the worst carbon trading markets in the country and O'Malley saw to it personally that waste-to-energy incinerators are now classed as renewables, on the same level as wind and solar. This means that waste-to-energy (trash burning) incinerators get financial incentives from the state government, even though incinerators are more carbon intensive than coal or gas.
*O'Malley's approach to cleaning up chicken waste has put the burden on individual farmers to clean up the mess. The problem with this is that farmers operate as franchises of the industry and are deliberately kept on the edge of penury. Rules of operation from the parent companies also keep farmers' hands tied. Chicken waste is a systemic issue for the poultry industry, which has decided to offload their mess onto individual farmers. A bill to make the poultry companies pay for their mess (MD residents are required to pay a "bay cleanup tax", these companies are exempt) was met with a swift promise from O'Malley to veto it.
*O'Malley's solution for the chicken waste problem is to build poultry waste incinerators on the Eastern Shore - it would only make things worse.
*O'Malley's reforms on poultry waste are designed to make it look to environmentalists like something (superficial) is done, without ruffling the feathers of the poultry industry, an important influence in the Iowa caucus. Making nearly-bankrupt farmers pay for this instead of the companies has contributed to anti environmentalism sentiment on the Eastern Shore - this is why the poultry industry actually likes the fees on their farmers.
*O'Malley U-turned on fracking when he realized that he needs the support of the oil&gas industry for his presidential campaign. His SuperPAC has received a LOT of donation money from the fracking lobby, and there have been closed-to-the-public schmoozefests in fancy hotels with industry officials. O'Malley took a weak stance on Cove Point and even fell asleep during a hearing on the project.
*O'Malley BELIEVES in climate change. That's for sure. But BELIEF isn't enough to make you a "climate hawk". While he's enacted some policies, his environmental legacy is very mixed in MD, with massive increases in coal exports, continued tax exemptions for our own coal industry, pandering to the poultry and fracking lobbies, cancer clusters in the poultry-producing regions of the Eastern Shore, purchase of pollution credits from elsewhere in the US being used as an excuse for dirty projects in highly-polluted parts of the state (Cove Point liquefaction facility and gas power plant, Fairfield Incinerator).
*Tidwell's unwavering faith in O'Malley's credentials is one of the reasons why we are going to have fracking in MD. CCAN has been a terrible leader in fighting oil and gas exports and fracking.