Scientists protest as President Trump picks climate change skeptic for key NOAA post

Scientists protest as President Trump picks climate change skeptic for key NOAA post

President Trump has tapped a climate skeptic to help run the federal agency charged with overseeing the government’s research on climate change. David Legates, a professor of climatology at the University of Delaware and a member of the Heartland Institute, a conservative think tank that denies climate change represents a serious threat to the world, was appointed last week to serve as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s deputy assistant secretary of commerce for environmental observation and prediction, NPR reported. The appointment comes as wildfires that most scientists agree have been made worse by climate change continue to rage throughout the Western states. Temperature records continue to fall, with NASA concluding that 2010-2019 was the hottest decade ever recorded. Hurricane Sally, the latest in a series of unusually strong tropical storms that scientists believe are linked to warming oceans, unleashed torrential downpours on Alabama and Florida on Wednesday. For just the second time in recorded history, five tropical cyclones are now active in the Atlantic Ocean. In April, Legates published a piece that appeared on the Heartland Institute’s website which summed up his skepticism on climate change. “Natural forces have caused climate changes and extreme weather events throughout history. What proof is there that what we see today is due to fossil fuel emissions and not to those same natural forces?” Legates and co-author Paul Driessen wrote. In 2019, Legates spoke at a hearing before the House Natural Resources Committee and denied what is now accepted scientific fact, that adding carbon dioxide ...
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