Climate Science Misrepresented by President Trump

Date: October 14th, 2018

Agency: Federal, White House

Explanation: Bias and Misrepresentation

Scientist: Climate

In a televised interview on October 14, 2018, President Trump questioned the validity of scientific research establishing that greenhouse gas emissions are the primary driver of climate change. When asked for his views on climate change, President Trump stated:

“I think something’s happening. Something’s changing and it’ll change back again. I don’t think it’s a hoax, I think there’s probably a difference. But I don’t know that it’s man-made.”

When the interviewer referred to the accelerated melting of glaciers, which scientists have attributed to rising temperatures associated with anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions, President Trump responded:

“And you don’t know whether or not that would have happened with or without man. You don’t know. “

The President’s statements were widely criticized by climate scientists. The American Meteorological Society (AMS), for example, described President Trump’s statement’s as “misleading and very damaging.” In a letter to the President, AMS noted:

“There is an overwhelming body of scientific evidence that shows that the warming global climate we have been experiencing in recent decades is primarily caused by human activity and that current long-term warming trends cannot be expected to reverse if no action is taken. These conclusions come from multiple independent lines of evidence. As is standard for the scientific process, each of these lines of evidence has undergone rigorous testing and has overcome all credible challenges. They reinforce one another and there are no contradictory lines of evidence that withstand scientific scrutiny. As a result, the basic scientific conclusions about climate change are extremely robust.”