Negotiators at the Glasgow climate conference will face a critical choice: Set firm emissions targets for 2030, or settle for goals of achieving “net zero” by 2050? The course they set could determine if we have a shot at avoiding the worst impacts of climate change.
"Columbus Delano" is a name that's positively dripping with American history.
A two-term Ohio Congressman in the 1860's, Delano had a reputation for speaking up for the civil rights of recently freed slaves. He seemed a logical choice for President Ulysses S. Grant to appoint as Secretary of the Interior to deal with the burgeoning "Indian problem" in the American West.
By the time Columbus Delano took office in 1870, both the slaughter and relocation of Native Americans and the extermination of bison were well underway. Delano came to embrace the policy that Plains Indians could best be vanquished if their source of food and warmth simply vanished. With an unofficial federal endorsement, millions of bison were slaughtered.
Secretary Delano connected the dots in 1873:"The civilization of the Indian is impossible while the buffalo remains upon the plains. I would not seriously regret the total disappearance of the buffalo from our western prairies, in its effect upon the Indians, regarding it as a means of hastening their sense of dependence upon the products of the soil and their own labors."
And the American bison nearly did disappear. By the end of the 19th century, a few dozen remained.