President Trump and Joe Biden Discussed Climate Change in First Presidential Debate


Images from Gage Skidmore via Flickr.

Maxwell Bernstein | September 30, 2020

Last night’s presidential debate between President Donald Trump and the Democratic nominee Joe Biden discussed topics such as supreme court nominations, COVID-19, civil unrest, and climate change. 

Despite the debate being cacophonous, riddled with harsh insults, interruptions and mistruths, Joe Biden discussed the topic of climate change for 5 minutes and 24 seconds while President Trump discussed the topic of climate change for 4 minutes and 32 seconds, according to this graphic from NBC News

Chris Wallace, the moderator of the presidential debate, asked President Trump about his stance on the science of climate change by asking about Trump’s move on pulling the U.S. out of the Paris Climate Accord, rolling back Obama era regulations and citing Trump’s recent quote, “Well, I don’t think the science knows.” 

“I want crystal clean water and air,” President Trump said. “We have now the lowest carbon, if you look at our numbers, we are doing phenomenally.” Despite the President’s words, the West Coast wildfires created some of the worst air quality on the planet as reported by Iowa Environmental Focus

Joe Biden discussed his $2 trillion plan for climate change and environmental justice by talking about job growth through investing in green infrastructures and businesses. Biden cited global warming as the reason for the derecho that hit Iowa

Although global warming is directly increasing severe weather, it is unknown if global warming directly caused the derecho that hit Iowa in August since derechos have occurred in the past. 

The rise in temperatures from CO2 emissions does directly cause an increase in the severity and frequency of extreme weather patterns and forest fires.  

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