Today Meet the Press finally stepped up and gave Global Warming some of the urgency the climate crisis deserves.
Good Sunday morning, and a happy New Year's weekend to everyone. This morning, we're going to do something that we don't often get to do, dive in on one topic. It's obviously extraordinarily difficult to do this, as the end of this year has proven, in the era of Trump. But we're going to take an in-depth look, regardless of that, at a literally Earth-changing subject that doesn't get talked about this thoroughly on television news, at least, climate change. But just as important as what we are going to do this hour is what we're not going to do. We're not going to debate climate change, the existence of it. The Earth is getting hotter. And human activity is a major cause, period. We're not going to give time to climate deniers. The science is settled, even if political opinion is not. And we're not going to confuse weather with climate. A heat wave is no more evidence that climate change exists than a blizzard means that it doesn't, unless the blizzard hits Miami. We do have a panel of experts with us today to help us understand the science and consequences of climate change and, yes, ideas to break the political paralysis over it. Kate Marvel is a scientist at Columbia University and NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies. And she writes the Hot Planet column for Scientific American. Craig Fugate was President Obama's FEMA administrator for eight years. And he led emergency response for republican governor Jeb Bush of Florida before that. Michèle Flournoy served as undersecretary of defense under President Obama, where she dealt with the national security threat climate change poses. She's also the cofounder and managing partner of WestExec Advisors. Anne Thompson is our chief environmental correspondent right here, at NBC News. And Congressman Carlos Curbelo represents the southernmost part of Florida, which is particularly threatened by climate change. Coming up, I'm also going to have conversations with former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and California governor Jerry Brown, both of whom have been on the front lines, dealing with climate change over the last few years. But we're going to begin with a look at a crisis that's been ignored for too long.
Drilling for Oil & Gas in public lands & waters contributes 1/4 of all US GHG emissions
But in a new NBC News-Wall Street Journal poll, two-thirds of Americans believe action is needed to address global climate change. 45% say the problem is serious enough for immediate action, a record high.
Poll: 92% of Democrats and 64% of Republicans support the concept of a Green New Deal
This year, a series of climate reports, including one produced by 13 agencies in Mr. Trump's government, issued dire warnings of economic and human catastrophe, if there is not immediate action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. But the federal response to the climate crisis has been political paralysis and denial.
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Well, let's jump right into the panel. And as I said at the beginning of the show, no offense to everybody else here, but we're going to start with the scientist. Dr. Marvel, I think the question here is, how do you explain the urgency to Americans, right? That has been, I think, the challenge. And I think it came through during the Michael Bloomberg interview. Explain the urgency of what we're facing.
Oh, my gosh. I wish I knew. I wish a had a good answer for this. Because as scientists, what we want to do, what we're always tempted to do, is show more data and more graphs, like there's going to be some magic equation that's going to convince everybody. And there isn't. You know, I don't think that a lot of the reluctance to accept climate change, I don't really think that's about the science. I think that's about values. I think that's about the sort of deep story of how people see themselves. So I think it's really important for scientists to go out in communities, engage with what's important to people in communities.
It feels overwhelming.
It is overwhelming.
The science feels overwhelming. I'll be honest. It just does. Is there a way of figuring out how to prioritize the challenge?
I mean, that's the thing. It is overwhelming. Because we are talking about something that affects the planet that we live on. We're talking about global warming. But we're also talking about changes to rainfall patterns, changes to extreme events, like heat waves and floods and droughts and hurricanes. So it should feel overwhelming, because it is overwhelming, I think.
More US media will follow suit, the big question is when?
More of this, please!
American corporate media is so lame. I have Google News bookmarked, and Google News censors climate stories from their ‘Science’ section (except on rare occasions).