The Baker administration’s embattled climate change undersecretary David Ismay is again being called out for his questionable comments – this time against fishermen.
The Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance, that broke the first video on the $130,000-a-year official’s rhetoric, says he also told climate activists that in order to obtain enough wind power, “something has to give” in regard to the fishing industry.
“We need offshore wind, and yes there is fishing out in the ocean too, but you know, there’s, we can’t have no offshore wind, no transmission, no solar, and have clean energy. Right. Something has to give,” Ismay is quoted telling Vermont climate advocates last month. He goes on to discuss transmission lines that will be placed in the ocean.
Massachusetts is home to some of the nation’s most productive commercial fishing ports, the state Division of Marine Fisheries states. The agency adds they are “happy to help commercial fishermen learn about permits, regulations, and the other commercial fishing resources.”
In a release on the new video clip Wednesday morning, MassFiscal states Ismay’s comments “cement the notion that large scale wind farms will have unknown, negative impacts upon the region’s struggling fishing industry.”
MassFiscal spokesman Paul Diego Craney adds: “The Legislature recently removed from legislation language that would help us learn what a large-scale wind farm would do to the region’s fishing industry and Ismay’s comments verify what we all feared.”
Gov. Charlie Baker once again lashed out at Ismay’s choice of words by saying Wednesday “he does not speak for me.”
Baker said there “will always be competing interests” when it comes to climate change issues.
“It’s the job of government to figure out how to manage that,” Baker said.
“You have to figure out some way to create balance there,” Baler continued. “No one speaks for me, when they say, you know, this one is going to be the loser and this one’s going to be the winner.”
The new video clip comes a day after a group of bipartisan lawmakers called for Ismay’s immediate dismissal after last week’s video where he was quoted saying it’s time to start “turning the screws” on ordinary Massachusetts residents to further cut carbon emissions.
Multiple attempts to reach Ismay have been unsuccessful.
Baker last week slammed the undersecretary’s original comments, in responding to a Herald reporter’s question on Ismay, by saying: “No one who works in our administration should ever say or think anything like that – ever.”
Craney warns that the latest Ismay video clip where he says “something has to give” in the fishing industry “should be seen as a warning for the fishing community that their livelihood may be jeopardized by these megaprojects.”
This is a developing story. Here is the latest video clip:
[Update, Feb. 11: Massachusetts climate official David Ismay resigns]