A Statement by the Rev. Mitch Hescox
President/CEO of the Evangelical Environmental Network
A new major scientific report on climate change released today by the U.S. government starkly contradicts the view of President Trump, who stated previously that climate change is a hoax. Since taking office the President and his administration have done all they can in the area of policy to implement their view, including withdrawing from the international climate agreement, the Paris Accord, and thwarting the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan that required electric utilities to reduce their carbon pollution.
Today’s report, currently the most authoritative up-to-date scientific report in the world, makes it abundantly clear once again that human activities are the main cause of climate change:
"Many lines of evidence demonstrate that it is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century. Over the last century, there are no convincing alternative explanations supported by the extent of the observational evidence (p. 14)."
It notes that the current level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere (above 400 ppm) has not been seen since three million years ago, “when both global average temperature and sea level were significantly higher than today” (p. 11).
What has been the result, according to the report? Extreme weather, heat waves, intensified forest fires — in short, what we have seen in abundance in 2017.
The report, focused on the science, is part of what is called the National Climate Assessment, which is mandated by a 1990 law that both Republican and Democratic administrations have adhered to. This is the fourth National Climate Assessment or NCA4. It was led by the federal government’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), with participation by NASA, the Department of Energy, as well as scientists from other branches of government (e.g. USDA).
Given the report’s findings, which affirm once again what many previous reports have concluded, the Trump Administration’s efforts to thwart our country’s climate actions are foolish and unconscionable.
We will continue to do all we can to move our country forward on overcoming climate change while creating sustainable prosperity, and we urge all Christians and others of good will to do the same.