President Trump, pursuing his long-standing crusade to discredit climate science, touted a self-proclaimed environmental expert’s appearance on Fox News Tuesday in support of his views.
“The whole climate crisis is not only Fake News, it’s Fake Science,” Trump tweeted, attributing the quote to Patrick Moore, a climate change denier whom both Trump and “Fox & Friends” identified as a co-founder of Greenpeace. “There is no climate crisis, there’s weather and climate all around the world, and in fact carbon dioxide is the main building block of all life.”
“Wow!” the president added after tagging his favorite morning television show.
Greenpeace, a prominent international environmental organization, quickly responded to both Trump and “Fox & Friends,” saying Moore was misrepresenting himself.
“Patrick Moore was not a co-founder of Greenpeace,” the organization said on Twitter. “He does not represent Greenpeace. He is a paid lobbyist, not an independent source. His statements about @AOC & the #GreenNewDeal have nothing to do with our positions.”
On “Fox & Friends,” Moore criticized the so-called Green New Deal championed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and other progressives.
He called Ocasio-Cortez a “pompous little twit” and added: “a little bit of warming would not be bad for myself, being a Canadian.”
Moore is a policy adviser to the Heartland Institute, which describes itself as “one of the world’s leading free-market think tanks” and is an influential promoter of fossil fuel development and climate science denial.
Moore has a long history of misrepresenting himself as one of the founders of Greenpeace.
According to a lengthy statement posted on Greenpeace’s website in 2010, Moore “often misrepresents himself in the media as an environmental ‘expert’ or even an ‘environmentalist,’ while offering anti-environmental opinions on a wide range of issues and taking a distinctly anti-environmental stance. He also exploits long-gone ties with Greenpeace to sell himself as a speaker and pro-corporate spokesperson, usually taking positions that Greenpeace opposes.”
“Although Mr. Moore played a significant role in Greenpeace Canada for several years, he did not found Greenpeace,” the organization added. “Phil Cotes, Irving Stowe, and Jim Bohlen founded Greenpeace in 1970.”
Trump, meanwhile, regularly uses his Twitter feed to cast doubt on climate change, despite conclusions of his own administration that it poses a dire threat to the United States.
In February, the president did not mention climate change in his 82-minute State of the Union address. A week before, he took the opportunity to advertise his ill-informed speculation that cold weather disproves the fact of climate change.
In testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Jan. 29, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats warned that climate change remains a national security threat.
“Global environmental and ecological degradation, as well as climate change, are likely to fuel competition for resources, economic distress and social discontent through 2019 and beyond,” Coats said. “Climate hazards such as extreme weather, higher temperatures, droughts, floods, wildfires, storms, sea level rise, soil degradation and acidifying oceans are intensifying, threatening infrastructure, health, and water and food security.”
He added: “Extreme weather events, many worsened by accelerating sea level rise, will particularly affect urban coastal areas in South Asia, Southeast Asia and the Western Hemisphere. Damage to communication, energy and transportation infrastructure could affect low-lying military bases, inflict economic costs and cause human displacement and loss of life.”
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