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Florida’s “Don’t Say Climate Change” Law Receives Backlash

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Florida’s “Don’t Say Climate Change” Law Receives Backlash
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Florida’s “Don’t Say Climate Change” Law Receives Backlash

Source: Pinterest

Florida’s Republican governor, Ron DeSantis, is no stranger to controversial issues and laws. This is evident recently, as he passed a law called “Don’t Say Climate Change” and has gotten a lot of backlash for it.

DeSantis Implements “Don’t Say Climate Change” Bill

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As the world faces an increasingly alarming global climate crisis, most countries and states are implementing new policies to combat the threat. However, Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis has passed a controversial bill named “Don’t Say Climate Change.” This has caused a lot of backlash from experts, including a popular South Florida meteorologist. 

Another Controversial Bill

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One of the most controversial laws DeSantis has passed is the Parental Rights in Education Act, which most people refer to as the “Don’t Say Gay” law. He passed it in 2022, and it banned the discussion of sexuality and gender identity in schools. Now, the governor has introduced another controversial law which many believe will be detrimental to the climate. 

Using the “Climate-friendly” Phrase

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The Sunshine State’s new bill focuses strictly on Florida’s energy policy. However, it also notably doesn’t mention the words “climate change.”  Instead, it uses the phrase “climate-friendly.” The bill also bans any future offshore wind energy farms that people might want to build in the state, further proving that the bill does not take climate change as seriously as it should. 

Promoting Fossil Fuel Companies

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This new “climate-friendly” bill seems to be making things worse in the state, as it favors local fossil fuel companies. This grants them preferential treatment as the new law will repeal energy efficiency grant programs. The bill will also fund extensive programs structured to help natural gas facilities and make fossil fuels more affordable for the state’s residents. 

ALSO READ: New Study Reveals Underground Climate Change Below Populated U.S. Cities

DeSantis’ Lack of Concern

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While the law might help people get gas at lower rates, it is also bad news for the state’s climate. Therefore, many people are concerned about DeSantis’ complete disregard for climate change while passing the law. This is not surprising, as he has once mentioned that he is “not a global warming person” and seeks to replace “climate change” with “energy dominance.”

Florida’s Terrible Climate

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What makes DeSantis’ attitude towards climate change more concerning is the fact that Florida has been facing very serious side effects from climate change over the past decade. It is arguably the state with the most severe environmental consequences. It used to have 1,350 miles of coastline, but most of these have been destroyed over the past ten years due to climate change.

POLL—Is Climate Change a Major Threat That Requires Immediate Policy Action?

The First Heatwave Warning in 15 Years

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The coastline issue is just one of Florida’s many climate-related problems. In fact, the state is facing a terrible heat wave unlike anything it has ever seen. This caused the National Weather Service to release its first heat wave warning in fifteen years. Apart from the scorching heat, the state is battling other major weather conditions such as tropical storms, flooding, hurricanes, and more. 

Meteorologist Speaks Against the “Don’t Say Climate Change Bill”

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Therefore, it is quite ironic that the governor announced his “Don’t Say Climate Change” bill while the state is battling its worst heatwave in over a decade. Steve MacLaughlin, a meteorologist from NBC6 spoke on this pressing topic on his segment on May 18th. He said that while the world is looking at Florida to lead climate change initiatives, the state’s government is dismissing it as a low priority. 

MacLaughlin Asks Florida Residents to Vote for Change

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The meteorologist continued, saying that people need to remember that they have the most powerful solution to climate change—their votes. While emphasizing that he wasn’t telling people who to vote for, he encouraged people to do research by themselves because while some candidates believe in climate change and seek to reduce it, some do not. 

ALSO READ: Scientists Propose Drying Out the Sky To Help Fix Climate Change

A Brave Move

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Many people have applauded MacLaughlin’s bold decision to talk about this pressing issue on his show. Even the Chief meteorologist at WFLA, Jeff Berardelli, said that he has to give big kudos to MacLaughlin for being bold and honest about it. This is because many other reporters, meteorologists, and journalists who spoke on the issue have received a lot of backlash, threats and abuse for doing so. 

The Majority Believe in Climate Change

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Although Florida has voted for the Republican Party in 12 of the last 17 presidential elections, it is generally perceived as a swing state. Therefore, this is surprising as the Republicans have never been very concerned about climate change. As 90% of the state’s residents believe in the global topic, it is surprising that they have voted for a party that doesn’t support climate change. 

Florida’s Future Remains Uncertain

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The majority of Florida’s population believes in climate change and wants the government to do something about it. However, most of its leaders, including the governor, have refused to acknowledge the severity of the problem.

DeSantis still has two years in office, but there have been several predictions of what could happen in 2026. Experts urge the residents to consider the warnings from multiple experts and vote for people who prioritize climate change. 

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