On Monday night, the New York Times published a draft copy of a report from 13 government agencies that affirms climate change is real and human actions are having an effect on the warming of the planet.
The Times story notes that “scientists say they fear that the Trump administration could change or suppress the report.” Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt is an outspoken climate change skeptic, who does not believe carbon dioxide is a major factor in global warming.
Trump himself has been an aggressive critic of climate change for years. A search of the invaluable Trump Twitter Archive turns up 106 tweets in which Trump mentions “global warming” and 36 in which he used the phrase “climate change.”
All of those mentions express serious skepticism about the phenomenon. Trump has tweeted dozens of times about how it is so cold wherever he is and how that debunks the idea the climate is changing. He was also fixated for a time on the idea that scientists were changing the preferred nomenclature from “global warming” to “climate change.”
I mined through all of those tweets as well as a number of statements Trump has made about climate change. The 20 most dismissive are below in rough chronological order – starting in 2012 with his oldest comments.
17. “I’m not a believer in man-made global warming. It could be warming, and it’s going to start to cool at some point. And you know, in the early, in the 1920s, people talked about global cooling…They thought the Earth was cooling. Now, it’s global warming…But the problem we have, and if you look at our energy costs, and all of the things that we’re doing to solve a problem that I don’t think in any major fashion exists.”
18. “Well, I think the climate change is just a very, very expensive form of tax. A lot of people are making a lot of money. I know much about climate change. I’d be—received environmental awards. And I often joke that this is done for the benefit of China. Obviously, I joke. But this is done for the benefit of China, because China does not do anything to help climate change. They burn everything you could burn; they couldn’t care less. They have very—you know, their standards are nothing. But they—in the meantime, they can undercut us on price. So it’s very hard on our business.”
20. “I did not. I did not. I do not say that.” (see #1)
Correction: This post has been changed to correct the year in which Trump denied saying the Chinese created the concept of climate change.