The Obama administration last week declared, unequivocally, that climate change is a present-day reality already wreaking havoc across the U.S.
But Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio isn’t sweating the earth’s rising temperatures.
“I don’t agree with the notion that some are putting out there, including scientists, that somehow there are actions we can take today that would actually have an impact on what’s happening in our climate,” Rubio said in an interview that aired Sunday on ABC’s This Week. “Our climate is always changing.”
“I don’t know of any era in world history where the climate has been stable,” Rubio added.
The U.S. National climate Assessment Report, released last Tuesday, offered a dire assessment of the impacts of climate change.
“Residents of some coastal cities see their streets flood more regularly during storms and high tides. Inland cities near large rivers also experience more flooding, especially in the Midwest and Northeast. Insurance rates are rising in some vulnerable locations, and insurance is no longer available in others. Hotter and drier weather and earlier snow melt mean that wildfires in the West start earlier in the spring, last longer into the fall and burn more acreage,” the report said.
The federal government isn’t the only official body sounding the alarm. The United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concluded that humans have, in fact, caused global warming. The U.N. panel declared recently that climate change can be stopped -- but time is running out. The U.N.’s climate report also found that global warming can be mitigated with little impact on the global economy.
“I do not believe that human activity is causing these dramatic changes to our climate the way these scientists are portraying it,” Rubio told ABC News’ Jon Karl after being asked directly whether humans were contributing to the warming of the planet.
“And I do not believe the laws (scientists) propose we pass will do anything about it, except it will destroy our economy," Rubio added.
Rubio made similar comments in a recent interview with CNN, in which he knocked President Obama’s credentials on the issue by noting that the commander-in-chief is “not a meteorologist.”
The Florida senator is seen as a potential presidential candidate in 2016, though he has seen his lusture within the Republican Party fade. Rubio’s push for comprehensive immigration reform alienated him among the Republican base, and the effort stalled in the House.
Still, Rubio believes he’d be a contender if he makes a bid for the White House.
“I’ve openly said in the past that it’s something I’ll consider at the end of this year, that I’ll look at a number of factors, personal factors. But also whether I could best promote this message and actually put in place these ideas that I want to see put in place. Whether I could best do that from the presidency as opposed to the Senate," Rubio said in the ABC interview.