USA Today reports that President Obama has issued an Executive Order to begin combating the dangers and effects of climate change. The order creates the “Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience,” which will “advise the Administration on how the Federal Government can respond to the needs of communities nationwide that are dealing with the impacts of climate change.” The task force is made up of State, Local and Tribal leaders from around the country, 26 in all.
Among those local officials is Mayor Annise Parker. I didn’t actually get the press release from the City of Houston, but quickly found it on the government’s website. The Mayor’s office discussed all the green initiatives the City has been doing recently, including becoming the largest municipal purchaser of renewable energy.
Mayor Parker soon delivered a full statement:
“I am honored to have been chosen for this prestigious position and eager to be able to represent Houston’s pragmatic and diverse points of view on this issue. We are a city that is forward thinking when it comes to sustainability and the environment. We have a wealth of technological expertise in our existing energy sector. In fact, those companies are becoming the leaders in development of the new technologies that will support our nation’s future environmental policies.”
Among the other Mayors chosen for this honor, most were actually the leaders of smaller towns. The big exception, besides Parker, was Mayor Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles. Additionally, while all 8 Governors chosen were Democrats (from otherwise blue States), the Mayors represented a more diverse range of locations. For example, he Mayors of Knoxville, Tennessee and Salt Lake City, respectively, were also included (though both are registered Democrats).
The national news exposure for Parker is important, as it continues to paint a pattern of Mayor Parker edging to the left in more high-profile, national exposure issues.
It is unclear what, if any, impact this will have on the Mayoral campaign. That being said, I have contacted Ben Hall’s campaign to gauge its views on this subject. At press time, I have not received any response.