CNBC had on Scott Pruitt and discussed the Paris agreement and climate change.
On Thursday's edition of Squawk Box, host Joe Kernen asked Trump's new head of the EPA, Scott Pruitt, if the science had been settled on Co2 and climate change and Pruitt said "measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do."
Pruitt told host Joe Kernen that he hates the Paris deal and said, "I happen to think the Paris accord, the Paris agreement if you will, should have been treated as a treaty. Should have gone through Senate confirmation, that's a concern. I also think it was a bad deal."
Kernen then asked, "Let me ask you one other thing, just to get to the nitty gritty. Do you believe that it’s been proven that CO2 is the primary control knob for climate? Do you believe that?"
Pruitt replied, "No, I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do, and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact. So, no, I would not agree that’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see. But we don’t know that yet, as far as -- we need to continue debate -- continue the review and analysis."
Kernen, for some reason, is afraid to be labelled a climate change denier, but responded like one and said, "It’s, it’s a -- I agree. When I hear “the science is settled,” it’s like I never heard that science actually got to a point where it was – that’s the whole point of science is that you keep asking questions, you keep asking questions. But I don’t want to be called a denier, so it scares me. It’s a terrible thing to be called. "
The current warming trend is of particular significance because most of it is very likely human-induced and proceeding at a rate that is unprecedented in the past 1,300 years.
Earth-orbiting satellites and other technological advances have enabled scientists to see the big picture, collecting many different types of information about our planet and its climate on a global scale. This body of data, collected over many years, reveals the signals of a changing climate.
The heat-trapping nature of carbon dioxide and other gases was demonstrated in the mid-19th century. Their ability to affect the transfer of infrared energy through the atmosphere is the scientific basis of many instruments flown by NASA. There is no question that increased levels of greenhouse gases must cause the Earth to warm in response.
Ice cores drawn from Greenland, Antarctica, and tropical mountain glaciers show that the Earth’s climate responds to changes in greenhouse gas levels. Ancient evidence can also be found in tree rings, ocean sediments, coral reefs, and layers of sedimentary rocks. This ancient, or paleoclimate, evidence reveals that current warming is occurring roughly ten times faster than the average rate of ice-age-recovery warming.