Donald Trump, Mike Pence, Mike Pompeo
Photo credit: Adapted by WhoWhatWhy from U.S. Department of State / Flickr

Are you choking on the fumes of climate change denial? Check out this analysis of what’s in the air! It's not all laughing gas. Some of it may kill us all.

WhoWhatWhy Climate Change Coverage

If the hot air coming out of politicians’ mouths contributed toward climate change, the planet would be warming at an even more alarming rate.

The quotes below not only demonstrate astounding ignorance, they also illustrate why humanity is in so much trouble.

President Donald Trump

  • I want to use hair spray… They say, “Don’t use hair spray, it’s bad for the ozone.” So I’m sitting in this concealed apartment, this concealed unit… It’s sealed, it’s beautiful. I don’t think anything gets out. And I’m not supposed to be using hair spray? [Ed: to appreciate why Trump values hairspray, please see Vanity Fair’s photo essay on Trump’s hair. It demonstrates why the wind presents a real crisis for Trump.]
  • They say the noise [of turbines] causes cancer… If you have a windmill anywhere near your house, congratulations — your house just went down 75 percent in value.
  • You wanna see a bird cemetery? Go under a windmill sometime. It’s the saddest — you’ve got every type of bird.
  • I feel that the United States has tremendous wealth. The wealth is under its feet. I’ve made that wealth come alive. … We are now the No. 1 energy producer in the world, and soon it will be by far… I’m not going to lose that wealth, I’m not going to lose it on dreams, on windmills, which frankly aren’t working too well.
  • And I’m an environmentalist, a lot of people don’t understand that. I have done more environmental impact statements [as a real estate developer] probably than anybody that’s … ever been president.

Trump and the Mystery of Stupidity

Vice President Mike Pence

Jake Tapper interviews Pence, June 24, 2019.

TAPPER: But I want to ask you a question about climate change. The director of national intelligence, Dan Coats, said in a January report on worldwide threats that the climate emergency is — quote — “likely to fuel competition for resources, economic distress and social discontent.” It is a priority for the DNI, Coats.

The EPA this week, however, rolled back part of President Obama’s Clean Power Plan, letting states set their own limit for coal power plants emissions.

Do you think human-induced climate emergency is a threat to the United States?

PENCE: Well, what — what I will tell you is that we will always follow the science on that in this administration.

TAPPER: The science says it is.

PENCE: But what — but what we — but what we won’t do — and the Clean Power Plan was all about that — was hamstringing energy in this country, raising the cost of utility rates for working families across this country—

TAPPER: But is it a threat?

PENCE: —while other nations like China and India absolutely do nothing or make illusory promises decades down the road to deal with it.

You know, the truth of the matter is, with the advent of natural gas, with the natural gas explosion that is developing…


PENCE: …with clean coal technology, we’re seeing — we’re seeing a significant reduction in carbon emissions all across this country.

TAPPER: But is what people are calling a climate emergency, is it a threat? Do you think it is a threat, man-made climate emergency is a threat?

PENCE: I think the answer to is going to be based upon the science.

TAPPER: Well, the science says yes.

PENCE: Well…

TAPPER: I’m asking you what you think.

PENCE: There is many in the science that…

TAPPER: The science community in your own administration, at NOAA…

PENCE: I got it.

TAPPER: …at the DNI, they all say it is a threat.

PENCE: I got it. Look, what the President—

TAPPER: But you won’t, for some reason.

PENCE: —has said, what we have said is that we’re not going to raise utility rates. Remember what President Obama said?

TAPPER: But it is not a threat?

PENCE: He said — he said — he had his climate change plan. He said it is necessarily going to cause utility rates to skyrocket, and that would force us into these green technologies.

Now you have got Democrats all running for president that are running on a Green New Deal that would break this economy.

TAPPER: OK. So you don’t think it is a threat, is all I’m saying? You don’t think it is a threat?

PENCE: I think we’re making great progress reducing carbon emissions, America has the cleanest air and water in the world. We will continue to use market forces…

TAPPER: That is not true. We don’t have the cleanest air and water in the world. We don’t.

Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State

  • We will do the things necessary as the climate changes. Societies reorganize; we move to different places; we develop technology and innovation… I was just in the Netherlands, all below sea level, right? Living a wonderful, thriving economic situation. The world will be successful. I’m convinced.
  • [The arctic] houses 13 percent of the world’s undiscovered oil, 30 percent of its undiscovered gas, and an abundance of uranium, rare Earth minerals, gold, diamonds, and millions of square miles of untapped resources, fisheries galore.
  • Steady reductions in sea ice are opening new passageways and new opportunities for trade. This could potentially slash the time it takes to travel between Asia and the West by as much as 20 days. Arctic sea lanes could [become] the 21st-century Suez and Panama Canals.

Pat Robertson

Pat Robertson — founder of Regent University in Virginia, chairman of the Christian Broadcasting Network, and host of The 700 Club — believes he can control the weather with prayer. After all, he said, Jesus commanded the sea, and the waves of the sea of Galilee, to be still.

On Monday, September 10, 2018, he asked his audience to pray that Florence would “spare the area” and commanded the storm to “go harmlessly into the Atlantic. Go up north away from land and veer off, in the name of Jesus.” But when it came to his own properties, he was quite specific:

I don’t want it to hurt Regent, I don’t want it to hurt CBN, I don’t want it to tear up the beautiful campus, I don’t want it to tear these trees down, I don’t want to see any damage, I don’t want a bunch of glass flowing.

Three days later, Robertson triumphantly announced that the hurricane changed course.

Why? Because God’s people prayed and that’s what happened. This is a miracle ladies and gentlemen … When we pray, God does miracles.

Well, not quite. Florence caused extensive damage, but mostly in the Carolinas.

Assorted Nuts

  • [Environmentalists] think that we human beings, have more impact on the climate and the world than God does. — Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC) 
  • I believe there’s been climate change since the beginning of time. Do I think man has some impact? Yeah, of course. Can man change the entire universe? No… Why do I believe that? Well, as a Christian, I believe that there is a creator in God who is much bigger than us. And I’m confident that, if there’s a real problem, He can take care of it. — Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI)
  • God gave us the earth. We have dominion over the plants, the animals, the trees. God said, “Earth is yours. Take it. Rape it. It’s yours.” — Ann Coulter, pundit
  • What about erosion? Every time you have that soil or rock, whatever it is, that is deposited into the seas, that forces the sea levels to rise because now you’ve got less space in those oceans because the bottom is moving up. — Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL)
James Inhofe

Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) displays and tosses a snowball in the Senate in a famous attempt to debunk the “myth” of climate change. Photo credit: C-SPAN / YouTube

  • Peer-reviewed evidence shows that the sun has actually been driving the temperature change. That is a shocker. You don’t have to be a scientist to know that the sun can have something to do with climate change. — Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK)
  • I absolutely do not believe that the science of man-caused climate change is proven. Not by any stretch of the imagination. I think it’s far more likely that it’s just sunspot activity. — Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI)
  • Man-made CO2 does not contribute to climate change. — Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX)
  • Regarding a military proposal to protect bases against flooding, it is part of a “radical climate change agenda.” — Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO)
  • It isn’t pollution that’s harming the environment. It’s the impurities in our air and water that are doing it. — President George W. Bush
  • Carbon dioxide … is a natural byproduct of nature. Carbon dioxide is natural … Carbon dioxide is portrayed as harmful, but there isn’t even one study that can be produced that shows that carbon dioxide is a harmful gas … And yet we’re being told that we have to reduce this natural substance. — Former Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN)
  • I believe that more CO2 is good for the world, that the world has been in a CO2 famine for many tens of millions of years and that one or two thousand ppm would be ideal for the biosphere. I am baffled at hysterical attempts to drive CO2 levels below 350 ppm [parts per million], or some other value, apparently chosen by Kabbalah numerology, not science. — William Happer, advisor to Trump on climate change
  • Carbon dioxide is actually the main fertilizer and building block for life. The climate change narrative is not just fake news; it’s fake science. That is a fact, and I will put my reputation — 45 years as a scientist studying these subjects — on the line. I don’t get paid by the government to make up stories so politicians can scare the electorate into voting for them on the climate issue. — Patrick Moore, self-identified founder of Greenpeace. [Greenpeace Statement: “Patrick Moore has been a paid spokesman for a variety of polluting industries for more than 30 years, including the timber, mining, chemical and the aquaculture industries.”]
  • Today, the global warming alarmists are the equivalent of the flat-Earthers. It used to be [that] it is accepted scientific wisdom the Earth is flat, and this heretic named Galileo was branded a denier. — Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) [Ed: Actually, Galileo was called a heretic because he said the earth revolved around the sun.]

The following are from Goodreads.

Photo credit: Goodreads

Covering Climate Now

Related front page panorama photo credit: Adapted by WhoWhatWhy from GRID Arendal / Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0).


  • Milicent Cranor

    Milicent Cranor is a senior editor at WhoWhatWhy. She has worked as a creative editor at E.P. Dutton, a comedy ghostwriter, and editor of consequential legal and scientific documents. She has also co-authored numerous peer-reviewed articles for medical journals.

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