The New York TimesThe New York Times

Five Decades in the Making: Why It Took Congress So Long to Act on Climate

By Coral Davenport and Lisa Friedman

07 Aug 2022 · 8 min read

Editor's Note

You should read this story to learn how the US Senate voted in favor of a climate and healthcare reform bills which could become laws and how it impacts Joe Biden before the midterm elections.

In 1969, President Richard Nixon’s adviser Daniel Patrick Moynihan wrote a memo describing a startling future. The increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere caused by burning oil, gas and coal, Moynihan wrote, would dangerously heat the planet, melt the glaciers and cause the seas to rise. “Goodbye New York,” Moynihan wrote. “Goodbye Washington, for that matter.”

Fifty-three years later, Congress is on the cusp of finally responding to what Moynihan termed “the carbon dioxide problem.”

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