Most media are saying, “Pope steps down”

Carl Pope Switches Roles at the Sierra Club. By Kate Galbraith. New York Times.

This makes a lot of news not just because of the size of the Sierra Club, but its high level of activity.

Pope has been the Club’s executive director for a long time. He is moving over to a related organization working on climate change. Another article on this said that “In his new position, Pope would likely be the Sierra Club’s “public face” on global warming issues.

Pope gets a lot of credit for moving hard into effort to reduce CO2 emissions, but he has been criticized for being an advocate of centralized, big, alternative energy; and pushing the Club to endorse that.

The Club has been very helpful stopping a coal plant slated for just NW of Pocatello, Idaho, where I live. When I say “coal plant,” I mean just that. It wasn’t clear what the company wanted to do with coal; just something “coalish” — generate electricity? gasify coal? produce industrial chemicals? produce chemicals for fertilizer?  Whatever, however;  local business cheerleaders mostly jumped on their wagon.*

Sierra Club lawyers have been very good at resisting this coal plant unless the CO2 emissions are much lower than projected.

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* Idaho has no coal, but Pocatello is a railroad center.

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About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University with specialties in natural resource politics, public opinion, interest groups, political parties, voting and elections. Aside from academic publications, he is author or co-author of three hiking/backpacking guides, and he is President of the Western Watersheds Project.

One Response to Carl Pope Switches Roles at the Sierra Club

  1. avatar Alan Gregory says:

    I live in the heart of Pennsylvania’s old anthracite coal region. Idahoans should be eternally grateful that no coal dumps exist in their state.

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‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

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