Green Weenie of the Week: Green is the New Orange?

Green Weenie 2 copySince green weenies are more abundant than hydrocarbons these days we’ve upped our standards, and now only bestow our coveted award to truly extraordinary cases of green weeniedom. And this week we have a candidate for a Green Weenie Lifetime Achievement Award.

The background is . . . oh never mind. Let’s just go straight to a new paper (PDF file) from the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia Law School*:


Corrections and the Challenge of Climate Change

Executive Summary

This paper addresses two important but largely neglected questions: How will increased temperatures and heat waves caused by climate change affect prisons, jails, and their staff and inmate populations? And what can correctional departments do to prepare for greater heat and minimize the dangers it poses?

Some 2.2 million inmates are currently incarcerated in around 1,800 prisons and jails across the United States. Nearly half a million correctional employees work in these facilities. Indoor environmental conditions in prisons and jails therefore have a direct impact on the health of well over 2.5 million people. . .

Rising temperatures and increasingly harsh extreme-heat events will jeopardize the health of inmates and correctional officers alike, and will stress the physical plant of the correctional sector. Adapting their systems and facilities to greater heat and the other impacts of climate change will become an urgent challenge for correctional departments. The success or failure of correctional adaptation efforts will be measured in human lives as well as public dollars.

Until now, the implications of climate change for corrections have been largely disregarded by both correctional administrators and public officials working on climate adaptation policy.

And the paper goes on from here for nearly 100 pages.

* The Sabin Center describes itself thus:

The Sabin Center for Climate Change Law develops legal techniques to fight climate change, trains law students and lawyers in their use, and provides the legal profession and the public with up-to-date resources on key topics in climate law and regulation.

Yeah, I’m sure if we just get a judge to issue a restraining order against the climate it will stop changing. By the way, I’ve heard law school enrollment is plummeting, and law jobs are drying up. Wonder if there’s a connection with climate change here? I’m sure there is!

(Hat tip: Denver reader GS.)