In an interview last Wednesday, President Barack Obama stated that the main reason why he has been pushing to address climate change is due to his daughter’s asthma. Essentially, the President blames climate change for his daugther’s medical condition. While such a claim maybe politically expedient, it is not consistent with facts.
One commentary written in USA Today points out:
The good news is that there is less reason for alarm than the White House suggests. The Environmental Protection Agency cautions that “outdoor air pollution and pollen may also worsen chronic respiratory diseases, such as asthma.” Yet the EPA also reports that our air quality has substantially improved; aggregate emissions of common pollutants have decreased 62% between 1980 and 2013. It is unlikely that cleaner air is causing the increase in asthma.
It is a fact that President Obama was a smoker but quit sometime ago. When he did, he also smoked outside. The article goes on to point out:
Research funded by the National Institutes of Health has shown that smoking outside doesn’t totally protect children from secondhand smoke. Even when smoking is done outside, nicotine in infants’ hair is five times higher for babies with outside smoking parents than non-smoking parents. Smoking-related chemicals in infants’ urine is seven times higher. Other studies have found similar results.
In this case and not surprisingly, President Obama resorted to political expediency and not fact in making his case to address climate change. The Centers for Disease Control has stated that second hand smoke is a common asthma trigger and is usually the consequence of the mother smoking while regnant. Instead of punishing people for driving cars or utility companies who use coal or other fossil fuels to fuel power plants that provide energy for people, instead the President and his wife Michelle should look in the mirror as to who is to blame for his daughter’s condition.