While Republicans conveniently omitted the fact that fossil fuels play a significant part in driving the phenomenon of increasingly dangerous hurricanes, storms, and unusual weather patterns, AOC hit back with a not-so-gentle reminder.
Millions of Texans endured record-low temperatures last week amid prolonged power outages, bursting pipes, and widespread scarcity of clean water and food. While the crisis was largely caused by freezing natural gas pipelines — as Greg Abbott, the Governor of Texas, himself admitted in an interview with WFAA — conservatives lost no time in falsely claiming that renewable power sources are the root of the problem. "We should never build another wind turbine in Texas. The experiment failed big time," Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller wrote on Facebook while the Texas Public Policy Foundation — a conservative think tank with ties to the fossil fuel industry — alleged that the storm "never would have been an issue had our grid not been so deeply penetrated by renewable energy sources."
Rolling blackouts, burst water pipes and burning bookshelves to stay warm. Here's how a cold, dark week unfolded in Texas. https://t.co/xw1FZGDoMf— CNN (@CNN) February 21, 2021
Abbott, too, sang a different tune during his appearance on Fox News, blaming the humanitarian crisis on the Green New Deal — a congressional resolution introduced by Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) which calls on the federal government to wean the United States from fossil fuels and curb planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions across the economy. "This shows how the Green New Deal would be a deadly deal for the United States of America," Abbott told Sean Hannity. "Texas is blessed with multiple sources of energy, such as natural gas, oil, and nuclear, as well as, solar and wind."
Some prominent Republicans have blamed wind and solar power for the blackouts in Texas. But the truth is *every* kind of power generation fell short.— NPR (@NPR) February 19, 2021
In fact, significantly more natural gas and coal went offline than renewables.https://t.co/Om3B60kSRv
"But our wind and solar got shut down. They were collectively more than 10% of our power grid and that thrust Texas into a situation where it was lacking power on a statewide basis. It just shows that fossil fuel is necessary for the state of Texas as well as other states to make sure we will be able to heat our homes in the winter times and cool our homes in the summer times," he added.
Texas Gov. Abbott blames solar and wind for the blackouts in his state and says "this shows how the Green New Deal would be a deadly deal for the United States of America" pic.twitter.com/YfVwa3YRZQ— Andrew Lawrence (@ndrew_lawrence) February 17, 2021
While Republicans conveniently twisted the truth and omitted the fact that fossil fuels play a significant part in driving the phenomenon of increasingly dangerous hurricanes, storms, and unusual weather patterns, Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez was more than happy to give them a not-so-gentle reminder. "I go offline a few days and return to a GOP Gov blaming policies he hasn't even implemented for his own failures. Gov. Abbott doesn’t seem to have a grasp on his state, so here's a reminder: Texas runs 80-90% on fossil fuels. The real 'deadly deal' is his failed leadership," she tweeted.
"The horrors currently unfolding in Texas expose both the reality of the climate crisis and the extreme vulnerability of fossil fuel infrastructure in the face of that crisis. So of course the Green New Deal finds itself under fierce attack." @NaomiAKlein https://t.co/JPPEEtn8ef— Mira Kamdar (@mirakamdar) February 21, 2021
"So many Texans are in desperate conditions without heat, water, and little relief. Gov. Abbott needs to get off TV pointing fingers & start helping people. After that, he needs to read a book on his own state's energy supply. I'll be prepping TX relief emails if he needs help," Ocasio-Cortez wrote in another tweet. While Abbott was running around spreading lies and Ted Cruz — the Republican Texas chose to represent itself in the Senate — was flying his family to the safety and warmth of Cancún, AOC was busy raising money for relief efforts in the state. According to CNN, as of Sunday evening, the New York Democrat had amassed a whopping $4.7 million to help Texans hard hit by the winter storm.
One last update (I think!): We just hit $5 million raised for Texans across the state.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 22, 2021
Thank you ALL for your collective action when people need it most.
Charity can’t replace policy, but solidarity is how we’ll face climate change and build a better world. 💪🏽🌎
Thank you 🙏🏽 pic.twitter.com/RzdgXllXoS
AOC also flew to Houston to join Democratic Texas Rep. Sylvia Garcia to distribute supplies and visited food distribution centers, water delivery sites and toured the damage wreaked by the unprecedented storm. "It's one thing to read about what's going on but it's another thing entirely to see the damage for ourselves," she said. "The message in Washington is let's not let people get caught up in a bunch of red tape. Let's try to get this assistance out the door as much as people need and as quickly as we can."
As we toured the homes of constituents @koryahaywood & Ms. Hulsey, we saw the damage this storm has done & all the work we have left to do.— Rep. Sylvia Garcia (@RepSylviaGarcia) February 20, 2021
Good news, @POTUS has authorized federal funds to help us rebuild, please visit ⤵️ to apply for FEMA assistance