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Donald Trump discusses a plan to help veterans and talks for the first time publicly on recent events in Dallas, Texas., during a speech at Westin Town Center in Virginia Beach, Va., on Monday, July 11, 2016. (Kristen Zeis/The Virginian-Pilot via AP)

Trump’s denial of climate science at odds with world leaders

WASHINGTON (AP) — If elected president, Donald Trump would be the only head of state in the world to contend that climate change is a hoax, according to a study.

The Sierra Club compiled public statements from the leaders of the 195 nations recognized by the State Department. An advance copy of the group’s report, released Tuesday, was provided to The Associated Press.

In contrast to public statements by the presumptive Republican presidential nominee calling climate change a “con job” and a “myth,” the leader of every U.S. ally urges action to reduce climate-warming carbon emissions, including Great Britain, Germany, France, Japan and Canada.

Chinese President Xi Jinping, head of the Earth’s most populous country and the No. 1 global emitter of carbon, has called for eventually phasing out dirty coal-fired power plants and is leading an ambitious national effort to build massive arrays of solar panels and wind turbines.

The regime of reclusive North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un signed on to the Paris accord last year and is implementing a 10-year push to plant new forests as part of a “national effort to mitigate climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”

Even the leaders of nations economically dependent on oil production also accept the reality that the world’s climate is warming, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and Saudi King Salman.

“Being highly vulnerable to climate change and actions and plans to address it, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will be engaged in several actions to address climate change and make its development more sustainable,” the Saudi state said in a statement issued last year.

Trump, meanwhile, has pledged to “renegotiate” U.S. commitments under the Paris accord and has suggested that the science of climate change is part of a plot to weaken the American economy.

“The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive,” Trump tweeted in 2012.

He has also cited cold winter weather as evidence the world is not really warming.

“The entire country is FREEZING — we desperately need a heavy dose of global warming, and fast! Ice caps size reaches all time high,” Trump tweeted during a 2014 blizzard.

While Trump’s climate-change denial has become orthodoxy within the Republican Party, it is at odds with the overwhelming consensus of the world’s scientific community and rejects reams of data about how the Earth’s climate is changing.

According to NASA, 97 percent of the climate scientists agree that the world is getting hotter and that man-made carbon emissions are to blame. Ten of the warmest years in history have occurred in the past 12. Studies show the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have decreased in mass, while the world’s oceans have risen on average nearly 7 inches in the last century.

Despite his public stance, there is evidence that Trump the businessman may be hedging his bets. Earlier this year, the Trump International Golf Links and Hotel in Ireland cited the threat of sea level rise in a permit application to build a nearly two-mile-long stone wall between it and the Atlantic Ocean.

Trump campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks did not respond to requests for comment.

John Coequyt, the Sierra Club’s director for global climate policy, said Trump’s failure to acknowledge basic climate science would leave him isolated on the world stage as president, adding, “Trump’s climate science denial would make him a global laughingstock if it wasn’t so dangerous.”

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Follow Associated Press environmental writer Michael Biesecker at http://Twitter.com/mbieseck

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Read the full Sierra Club report at http://bit.ly/29Bgb1C

 

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

One comment

  1. Richard W. Goodwin

    As the 2016 presidential campaign progress, the political rhetorical debate, surrounding environmental and energy policy, will escalate. A rational, logical and analytical approach should be applied to resolve these issues. This approach should be based upon peer review science not subjective opinion.
    I advocate a more scientific debate concerning energy and environment; i.e. submit to state and national organizations.
    As the 2016 presidential campaign progress, the political rhetorical debate, surrounding environmental and energy policy, will escalate. A rational, logical and analytical approach should be applied to resolve these issues. This approach should be based upon peer review science not subjective opinion.
    Recent peer review articles [April and May 2016] reflect a shift in scientific opinions on Global Warming and Climate Change.
    Articles, appearing in American Association for the Advancement of Science [ AAAS] peer review publication, Science, question Methane Emission Control app[lied to Oil and Gas [USEPA regulation] and the effect of Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation [AMOC] or Atlantic Conveyor belt causing sea level rises not melting of icebergs due to global warming.
    A review of such recent peer review would place the debate about Global Warming and Climate Change within the Scientific and Technical Community. Policy Makers should be expanding their advisory teams to include experts capable of interpreting published articles to ensure a rational and logical debate.
    Such an approach should be applied to national political issues – forming platforms of nominated candidates. Relying on professional politicians as advisors on such technical issues will not generate meaningful debate nor establish sound governmental policies. Using empirical results, to refute the concerns of Global Warming and Climate Change, poses a stronger argument than subjective rhetoric.
    In their new analysis, the consulting firm [ICF] modified their previous study and estimated methane recovery economics at a $3/Mcf gas cost. Sound policy should review EPA’s position on Methane control at Oil & Gas wells based on economics and peer review science.
    The engineering approach to policy making reflects analytical reasoning applied in a rational and logical manner. Mr. Andrew Card [Civil Engineer] was President Bush’s Chief of Staff and Dr. John Sununu [Mechanical Engineer] was President George W. Bush’s Chief of Staff.
    Please see figure of discredited ‘Hockey Stick’ depicting rising temperatures with time – a technical foundation for Global Warming and Climate Control Advocate.
    Richard W. Goodwin Ph. D., MBA, P.E. 7/14/16 West Palm Beach FL

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