Obama’s New Weapon Against Climate Change: TV Weather People

President sits down with Al Roker and others to take case to the public

Last Updated: August 4, 2014 @ 10:04 AM

President Obama sat down with NBC’s Al Roker, ABC’s Ginger Zee and other prominent weather forecasters Tuesday to make the case that climate change is real.

It’s an attempt to take the case straight to television viewers as a new landmark report, the National Climate Assessment, details how climate change has hurt America.

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“Part of the reason for putting forward this assessment — which involved hundreds of people, experts, businesses, not for profits, and local communities sharing their experience — is we want to emphasize to the public, this is not some distant problem of the future,” Obama told Roker in an interview that will air Wednesday on “Today.”

“This is a problem that is affecting Americans right now. Whether it means increased flooding, greater vulnerability to drought, more severe wildfires — all these things are having an impact on Americans as we speak,” Obama said.

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The president is going to the people because of what he called “resistance in Congress” — specifically, Republicans who insist that evidence of climate change is inconclusive, despite a near consensus that greenhouse gases are melting the polar ice caps, polluting the air, and otherwise hurting the planet.

This is the third time the U.S. Global Change Research Program has released the National Climate Assessment, which was established in 2010. You can read it here.


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