Lisa Murkowski
Lisa Murkowski

Let’s hear it for Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski who today urged fellow Republicans not to be afraid to utter the apparently forbidden words of “climate change.”

During a speech before utility regulators, Murkowski said it should be evident to all that man-made carbon dioxide emissions are causing temperatures to rise.

She has seen the impact of climate change in Alaska as multi-year sea ice vanishes from where it has historically been.

Yet, Republicans view the term “climate change” as too politically charged and take their cue from the tweeter-in-chief who has dismissed climate change as a “hoax" or "a concept created by and for the Chinese to make US manufacturing non-competitive."

Murkowski wants GOPers to get their heads out of the sand and have the “difficult conversation” about what must be done to combat global warming.

The Alaskan is not exactly an environmental activist. She chairs the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee and is a staunch advocate for her state’s oil and gas industry.

But she’s a realist who wants “to facilitate the climate conversation going forward by helping find balance and bring facts forward,” she said.

Her speech came two days after the Trump Administration released a proposal that would overturn the Obama rule requiring oil and gas companies to capture, rather than flare into the atmosphere, methane emissions from their facilities on public lands.

Those public lands release the same amount of methane produced annually by 50 coal plants, according to a Feb. 13 report in Inside Climate News.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke released the proposal that kicked off the process of overturning the Obama reg.

He’s the guy who warned National Parks officials late last year not to tweet about the impact of climate change on federal lands.

Zinke claims to believe global warming is happening but says he’s not sure about how much of it is due to human activity.

He should have a chat with Murkowski.