Climate change is a hot topic.

For some, like President Barack Obama, who will join world leaders next month in Paris for a global climate summit, there is no doubt about the impact of climate change on the world going forward and what to do about it.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, however, is afraid to publicly embrace reality fearing it will further hurt his low-polling among Republican base voters who deny it as fact.  Kasich also realizes that siding with the president on this world-wide issue is a bridge-too-far for GOP voters.

Kasich Waffles On Climate Change

“Do I believe there is something called climate change?” Kasich said, “I do. Do I think that human beings affect it? I do. How much? Not enough for me to go out and cost somebody their job,” said Kasich, according to The Huffington Post. “I don’t know that that’s why you have flooding. I just don’t know enough about it.”

Then, answering a follow-up question about the role greenhouse gas emissions produced by the burning of fossil fuels play in global warming, Gov. Kasich waffled again. “Well, again, I don’t know that’s scientifically proven that it’s because we have emissions and that’s what’s happening. Let me just stay there before I wade into another controversial area. Uh, but let me just say to you that I think there are things we can do to protect the environment. We should. But we shouldn’t worship the environment.”

Kaylie Hanson, a spokesman for the Democratic National Committee, tagged Ohio’s petulant, always angry governor as fraudulent on the topic. “Kasich’s latest admission is further proof that he espouses the same out-of-touch views as the rest of the Republican presidential field. Republicans should get it together and join Democrats who are facing the reality of a changing climate and pushing policies that will preserve our planet.”

Buckeye State Schools Sign-On To Climate Change ‘Pledge’

But for 218 university and college campuses, the reality of climate change is real enough that they’ve signed the “American Campuses Act on Climate Pledge” to demonstrate their support for strong climate action by world leaders in Paris next month.

“With less than two weeks until the President attends the Conference on Climate Change, the Administration is committed to building momentum and ensuring a variety of stakeholders are at the table to act on climate,” the White House said about the topic and the upcoming event in Paris, where terrorist attacks a week ago have only heightened the tension in the City of Light.

Institutions signing the pledge are now taking serious action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, increase campus sustainability and resilience, and incorporate environmental action into academic curriculum. Signers are setting goals to become carbon neutral within the next few decades.

Climate pledge signers represent over 3.3 million students across the country. So which Ohio schools signed-on to the pledge?

“As institutions of higher education, we applaud the progress already made to promote clean energy and climate action as we seek a comprehensive, ambitious agreement at the upcoming United Nations Climate Negotiations in Paris. We recognize the urgent need to act now to avoid irreversible costs to our global community’s economic prosperity and public health and are optimistic that world leaders will reach an agreement to secure a transition to a low carbon future. Today our school pledges to accelerate the transition to low-carbon energy while enhancing sustainable and resilient practices across our campus.”   

  1. Cleveland State University
  2. Cuyahoga Community College
  3. Denison University
  4. Kent State University
  5. Oberlin College
  6. The Ohio State University

The impacts of climate change are already being felt worldwide and President Obama recognizes the importance of collaboration and working across sectors to address the impacts of climate change, the White House said.