Muckraker: Grist on Politics

The group Californians for Population Stabilization is running an anti-immigration ad in the state claiming that immigrants are responsible for the country’s growing carbon emissions.

“Concerned about America’s huge carbon footprint? Then you should be concerned about immigration,” says a stylish-looking 20-something guy. He goes on to argue that because immigrants take up the carbon-spewing lifestyle of Americans, they quadruple the carbon footprint they would have had elsewhere. Thus, he concludes, the answer to global warming should be fewer Americans.

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The attempt to blame immigrants for the country’s emissions problem has provoked both outrage and confusion. As Mike Latner, a political science teacher at Cal Poly, noted in the New Times: “The root problem is America’s CO2 emissions.” Which might lead one to conclude that the answer is changing the pollution-happy American lifestyle — not simply blaming immigrants.

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Though the CAPS board contains several folks with environmental backgrounds, most environmental groups don’t want to touch this thing with a 10-foot-pole. It’s been a controversial issue in the green community for several years now.

CAPS has also been involved in print ads that have attempted to stoke anti-immigration sentiment among those who care about the environment.

Here’s the ad:

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