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Former Congressman Bill Inglis Speaks on Climate Change

By Anastasiia Vorobeva
On September 30, 2017

Pi Sigma Alpha hosted former Congressman Bob Inglis to listen to his talk on climate change. 
Photo By Anastasiia Vorobeva 

On September 19, former Congressman, Bob Inglis (R-SC) came to Concord University to speak to students, faculty, and the local community about climate change. The event was hosted by Pi Sigma Alpha, Concord’s Political Science Honor Society, in celebration of Constitution Day.

    Inglis served as a congressman for South Carolina from 1993 to 1998, then re-elected in 2004, holding the position until 2010. In 2012, he launched the Energy and Enterprise Initiative (“E&EI”) at George Mason University, where he promotes free enterprise action on climate change. Inglis was given the 2015 John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award for his work on climate change.

    Inglis began his talk “A Free Enterprise Solution to Climate Change” by asking the audience gathered in the Wilkes Family Chapel in University Point on the Athens campus to answer several politics and climate change related questions. He told the audience how he came to be passionate about climate change through connecting caring about Earth to a religious idea: “Love God. Love people.”

    He talked about possible solutions for dealing with climate change that could also benefit West Virginia and its struggle with the declining coal mining industry. Inglis believes that the introduction of a carbon tax could help to solve several problems at once – it could decrease the amount of greenhouse gas emissions generated by big organizations burning fuels and create a flow of money to the government, which can be redistributed back to the people. He suggests that, that collected money could be used to pay coal-minors’ pensions for their risky work.

    “If West Virginia, Kentucky, Montana, Wyoming delegation ask in Washington right now or say ‘We are going on this carbon tax if you fully fund the…pensions, if you give us job re-training like you gave textile workers and you give us relocation systems that were not given textile workers, if you get those three things, the coastal places, San Franciscans and Bostonians and New Yorkers would take that deal in a skinny minute,” says Inglis.

    “Coalminers can be taken care of in a carbon tax, cause there is a lot of money in it.” Inglis also said he believes West Virginia has a good natural gas potential.

    Inglis hopes that the audience would carry out the message from his talk that “there is hope and innovation. That we can move to energy future that is cleaner but also provide jobs to people who have provided to powers to us that far.”

    Dr. James White, professor of political science at Concord and a supervisor for Pi Sigma Alpha, believes that the topic of climate change “does fit particularly well with this area, which is energy dependent area especially when it comes to employment.” White thinks that Inglis was a great speaker

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