Even as public consciousness grows about the threat of climate change, the new Democratic majority in Congress will encounter many obstacles to strong emissions controls: industry resistance, budget constraints, disagreements among party leaders and the problem's daunting complexity and global scope.
"It's going to be difficult, but I think we can build on the groundswell that's out there to do something," Boxer said. "I'm an idealist, but I'm also a pragmatist."
She plans weeks of hearings, calling state officials, environmentalists and industry leaders, scientists and religious groups, maybe even former Vice President Al Gore and British Prime Minister Tony Blair. "We will listen, listen, listen," Boxer promised. But rising temperatures, increasing health hazards and the fact that U.S. emissions account for about 25 percent of the world's total means "we also have to act," she added.
We, the public, have to keep pressure on our leaders. They have big money taking the side of no changes, we have votes saying, CHANGE! But we have to tell them that over and over...and over.
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