Florida scientists who called out Gov. Rick Scott two years ago for doubting climate change now hope to meet with President-elect Donald Trump while he’s in the state celebrating the holidays.
In a letter this week, 10 scientists asked for a meeting to explain the perils of sea rise to the future president, who has called climate change a hoax. While Trump has nominated heads of energy and environmental departments who also deny climate change, he has met in recent weeks with former Vice President Al Gore and actor Leonardo DiCaprio, two of the more famous faces fighting to address the causes warming the planet.
“Much of your Mar-a-Lago Club could be under water in coming years because of man-made climate change,” the scientists wrote. “This is not a distant threat. Climate change is making an impact today.”
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The group over-nighted the letter Thursday and also requested a meeting through the club’s website, said spokeswoman Melissa Baldwin.
Among the scientists who signed the letter were University of Miami atmospheric scientist Ben Kirtman, who helped author a chapter on near-term climate change in the United Nations influential 2013 report, as well as UM’s Harold Wanless and Florida International University’s Leonard Berry. Two years ago, the scientists were part of a group that confronted Scott over his refusal to acknowledge the greenhouse gases driving climate change.
Scott eventually met with and thanked the scientists, but would not say whether he believed their warnings.
In their letter to Trump, which included a copy of the previous letter, the scientists sought to appeal to issues the next president promoted on the stump: jobs and boosting the economy.
“Climate change poses a threat to all Floridians, but clean energy solutions like efficiency and solar power will create thousands of jobs, boost our economy and improve the quality of life for all Americans,” they wrote. “Clean energy jobs can help make America great again.”
Follow Jenny Staletovich on Twitter @jenstaletovich