May 12th, 2014
09:02 AM ET
9 years ago

Rubio says humans aren't behind climate change

Washington (CNN) - Sen. Marco Rubio says he doesn't believe humans are causing climate change and doesn't think any action can reverse course.

This as a new White House report indicated that Rubio's home state of Florida is one of the most vulnerable to rising sea levels.

"I do not believe that human activity is causing these dramatic changes to our climate the way these scientists are portraying it," the first term senator said Sunday on ABC "This Week," after being asked by ABC News' Jon Karl whether humans were contributing to the heating up of the planet.

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"I do not believe that the laws that they propose we pass will do anything about it, except it will destroy our economy," added Rubio, who's seriously considering a bid for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.

Rubio says he's ready to be commander-in-chief

Rubio's latest comments are similar to what he said on CNN last week.

"I think severe weather has been a fact of life on earth since man started recording history. I understand that there's a vast consensus of scientists that are saying that human activity is what's contributing to changes in our climate. I think it's an enormous stretch to say that every weather incident that we read about or the majority of them are attributable to human activity," Rubio told CNN's Bill Weir Tuesday on "CNN Tonight."

Rubio's comments come as President Barack Obama's administration last week declared, unequivocally, that climate change is underway across the United States. The U.S. National climate Assessment Report, released last Tuesday, offered a dire assessment of the impact of climate change, and named Miami as the city most vulnerable to damage from rising sea levels. The report was criticized by many Republican lawmakers.

The U.S. isn't alone in raising serious concerns. The United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change came to the conclusion that humans are behind global warming.

In his CNN interview, Rubio knocked the administration's report and criticized the President's efforts on the issue of climate change. Obama has proposed new programs to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide, which most scientists say are the major cause of global warming.

"The President is, he's not a meteorologist. Here's what the President needs to be focused on. He's proposing a certain set of policies that he would have to admit if questioned will do nothing. If in fact these scientists are right and it's greenhouse gas emissions that are changing our climate, none of the things he's proposing would do anything to change that whatsoever, but it would have a devastating impact on our economy.

The most recent national polling on climate chanted indicated that a majority of Americans said humans were causing global warming. According to a Gallup poll conducted in early March, 57% of the public said human activities were behind global warming, with four in ten saying natural changes were causing the earth to heat up.

Fifty-four percent of those questioned in the survey said the effects of global warming were already happening. But less than four in ten said that global warming would pose a threat to their way of life.

The poll indicated a major partisan divide, with a majority of Democrats saying they worried a great deal about global warming, but more than six in ten Republicans saying they worried only a little bit or not at all about climate change.

Filed under: climate change • Global Warming • Marco Rubio • Poll • President Obama • Uncategorized
soundoff (731 Responses)
  1. Jerrs

    If he got elected President we could save a lot of money. I'm sure he would replace our nuclear military with bows and arrows and direct all our scientific research towards breeding better horses. Only scientists believe in those other things. I'm sure he also doubts if we ever went to the moon. NSA can stop keeping phone records because everybody knows we don't have enough government employees to find anything in millions of filing cabinets. We can stop all medical research because "God" determines if we live or die.

    May 12, 2014 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  2. rs

    Richard Right

    Rubio is bold to say the truth. Compared to that glowing hot orb that shows up in the morning and disappears some where at night man has a small effect on temperature outside his home or workplace. On an international level China, India, Russia, are far and away the greater problems and they really don't intend to change. Of course Rubio lacks contact with all the anti-American socialists here and abroad whom our President has spoken to. It must be wonderful for the President to know that the U.S. is responsible for all things wrong and must pay to fix everything.
    And what happens to your body when you put on a sweater or a jacket? That is precisely the effect that CO2 has on the earth- and as we crossed the 200 ppm barrier in the '60s, the 300ppm in the later '80s, and just recently the 400ppm level, one must conclude that: A) there is more CO2 getting into the atmosphere from somewhere, and :B) as the only culprits are people (and their cars, energy consumption and factories, the answer here isn't rocket science- it's people.
    Yes, China and India are significant polluters. China has detected their problem and is working on it. Your "logic" (and that of others) that it is too hard for us to do anything because of the pollution those nations create makes as much sense as saying "plumbing is too hard", I'll just do like they do in Somalia and take my dump in the backyard.
    You CAN do that, but boy do you look stupid.

    May 12, 2014 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  3. Citizen

    Scientific literacy should be a prerequisite for a citizen to run for high political office.
    I am surprised that a news organization like CNN doesn't have reporters and
    editors with a science background to challenge politicians with uninformed views.

    May 12, 2014 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  4. bob

    What a dud. One and done for his career.

    May 12, 2014 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  5. Wes

    I'm still waiting for the next ice age they said was coming back in the 70's........

    May 12, 2014 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  6. roger

    Would some of you liberal nuts tell me how we will stop global change especially if we don't get the biggest polluters on board like Russia, India, Pakistan, and China? Why should Americans spin their wheels and make concessions when it won't make a bit of difference other than cost us all more money. Liberals – always need a cause to promote. First it was global warming, then it was Obama because they wanted to prove to the world how progressive they were. Next cause is Hillary because she's a woman and how cool it would be to have the first woman president in office. We all saw how bad that reasoning was over the last 6 years haven't we?

    May 12, 2014 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  7. rs


    He's correct on the economic impact as least. Obama's economic policy is moronic to put more regulations on U.S. businesses and to push the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement with countries that already have far fewer restrictions.
    Green energy is the next industrial revolution. Sure we can let China win at that, but it sure seems that there has got to be huge profit and huge job numbers for whoever successfully harnesses solar, tidal and wind energy into an efficient, smart energy grid. I guess Republican just like burning coal....

    May 12, 2014 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  8. rs


    FINALLY someone with the guts to speak the truth about this left wing fairy tale. Now lets just sit back and watch the libs implode with anger aaaaahahahahahaa
    Lets just watch the lemmings march off the cliff.

    May 12, 2014 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  9. Robyn


    It's amazing how hard it is for someone to understand something,
    When they believe their job depends on them not understanding it.


    May 12, 2014 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  10. rs


    Is everyone in Congress this stupid?
    Only on the Right side of the aisle.

    May 12, 2014 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  11. Quentin E. Deverel

    Rubio is too young to be so ignorant. Some people will do anything to belong to the good ol' boys' club (wherein, "good ol' boys" = Koch Brothers). If he is the face of the younger generation, then there won't be many more younger generations.

    May 12, 2014 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  12. LogicandReason

    Mr. Rubio – Hiding from reality by sticking your head in the sand (I had another, more blunt idiom in mind) is not going to make what's real, disappear. Pollution is real. CO2 is real, and an ever increasing abundance of it in the atmosphere does result in the average temperature increasing over time.

    In case you didn't know, an abundance of data, collected and studied by well respected, peer reviewed climatologists from around the world, has pinpointed man's activities as by far, the majority producer of this excess CO2.

    America, at one time, liked to pride itself as being THE LEADER AMONG LEADERS within the confines of this world. What you are advocating, with your stated hokum, untruths and willfully ignorant wishful thinking, is that America NOT strive to lead.... That we stay shuttered in our self-imposed ignorance and make our decisions based on short term greed and self-serving, applied pseudo science.... That we NOT lead by example, utilizing real science, reason and logic.... And by not leading by example, we miss this major opportunity to strongly influence and encourage our allies and economic partners to follow suit in applying sane, productive and beneficial ecologic and energy policies... That we continue our vain attempt to extract every molecule of hydrocarbon based energy from the Earth as long is there is profit to be made, poisoning the planet and its people in the process while MAKING NO EFFORT TO LEAD THE WORLD in the search for and utilization of affordable, sustainable, safe, ZERO HARMFUL EMISSION sources of energy.

    Is America to be a LEADER Mr. Rubio...? Or do we opt to be an uninterested, selfish bystander.... The Nero of the 21st century, as the pending global climate disaster inches closer and closer, as we squander our last chances to mitigate it in any significant way....? Well?

    May 12, 2014 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  13. Dan

    Rubio is right and I bet he believes in Unicorns too.Whats next New Scopes monkey trials on evolution.

    May 12, 2014 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  14. bjarki

    Well said Marco Rubio, the climate change is steadily, only the stupid human believe in its own power to change the climate on earth. I have enough from the liberals, eating tofu, going green, raising taxes, change the world and destroy the economy. We need a big climate change in the office. More nature decisions less ideological "changes". Back to normalcy is the necessary step for the Americans, back to the roots, back to live.

    May 12, 2014 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  15. Rick

    Well thank goodness Marco Rubio is on the case. His expertise in the area is obviously much greater than that of the many thousands of scientists who have spent their lives studying such things! perhaps Mr. Rubio can also just wish away cancer and ED while he's at it!?

    May 12, 2014 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  16. Larry

    1st: Sen. Rubio is not a scientist. 2nd: When thousands of scientist, from around the world, point to human behavior causing climate change, I think its completely responsible for any of the world's leaders to support those findings.

    His rhetoric is only based in politics. We've become so embedded in our political gamesmanship, that any deviation from what we expect our parties to represent, you lose your political seat. This is our fault. And it will be our fault when we suffer from climate change in the future.

    May 12, 2014 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  17. Teaboogerbasher

    Rubio was born in Kenya....
    and this is his big suck up to the oil companies looking for campaign money...he would happily be a paid laundry boy for the oil companies, and iron creases in the CEO's boxer shorts and service them from a kneeling position : )

    May 12, 2014 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  18. bombastus

    This should disqualify Rubio from any consideration of being President. This shows that he is either stupid or a liar. Rubio is probably a smart guy who can understand scientific data and conclusions based on hard data which unambiguously shows that humans contribute to global warming. This means he is a liar and it is for the same reason that a lot of smart Republicans (ie Romney) are liars. They have got to play to the far right wing of their party to get nominated and then find a way to swing to the middle and not come across as flip-floppers. The GOP has been hijacked by the fringe. So instead of talking about smaller government, taxes, fiscal responsibility they have to argue against scientific facts, gun issues, Benghazi, and all the rest of the right wing distractions that get us nowhere. Throw another promising young Republican on the dung heap of GOP history.

    May 12, 2014 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  19. PaulieJ

    Google "Ice core data climate history" and you'll see the earth has been going through these cycles for hundreds of thousands of years. Is man and our industrialization accelerating the clock a bit? Well, "a bit" is ambiguous. A bit to us might mean we're hastening something to happen in 2yrs instead of 5. "A bit" in relation to global changes that have been happening for millennia might be 10,000 years difference. And if you do take a moment to look at those ice core graphs that show temperature variance and CO2 levels and if you accept that those have indeed happened over the last 400,000 years that the cores date back to then ask yourself this, "Once you go back say 10k or more years, how exactly did man and all his CO2 emitting factories and cars cause those changes?"
    As I started with, do I think our current means of living and manufacturing are adding to the CO2 levels? Absolutely.
    Do I think we are the catalyst? Nope.
    Do I think there are viable means of energy beyond fossil fuels? Sure. And I think switching to them would do wonders for our breathable atmosphere. Do I think a mass world wide change now is going to greatly impact what a) we've already done and b) what's going to happen as a cause of it? Not really.
    The earth will continue to go through these cycles as it has before we emerged as a species and will long after we're no longer on this planet.
    And that's a pattern that also seems to repeat ... when the current ecosystem can no longer support a species, it dies out and gets replaced by a new dominant species.

    May 12, 2014 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  20. steve-o

    If he gets the nomination, and runs.... I will be voting for him. The scientists who are saying that we are causing global weather changes are looking for those research dollars. I would like to point out that they can't predict the weather for tomorrow with 100% accuracy...... so how do you think they know what's going to happen globally?

    May 12, 2014 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  21. Tychi

    Why should it bother Rubio? This will not affect him, but it will hurt his children, not to mention the rest of the world.

    May 12, 2014 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  22. Chris

    Rubio also added, scientists are also wrong about the world not being flat as well!!!

    May 12, 2014 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  23. Logictox

    Humans have nothing to do with climate change. Climate change is real and due to solar activity as it has been for 4.5 billion years.

    May 12, 2014 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  24. scott

    OK so you think its an enormous stretch of logic to suggest that 10 BILLION human idiots burning everything they come across every single day just for the sake of comfort or convenience have altered the equilibrium of the little bubble of atmosphere that surrounds and protects us all?

    May 12, 2014 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  25. Yakobi

    First of all, unlike other theories, there's no consensus amongst scientists on this alleged "global warming" or "climate change" or whatever buzzword the left wing uses this year. Therefore, any assertion that isn't accompanied by peer-reviewed, demonstrable, cause-and-effect correlation isn't scientific at all, but merely an Al Gore type blowing smoke for their own political agenda.

    Second, short term patterns of rising oceans and warmer areas around the globe are easily measurable. The problem is when you start talking long term. After the Industrial Revolution, for example, Europe experienced a mini ice age. Did this have anything to do with all the carbon they spewed into the air? No one knows. You'd think the opposite would have happened, if all the Chicken Littles are correct.

    Furthermore, the earth goes through hot and cold periods all by itself without human intervention. Scientists do not have complete explanations for these periods. It could be due to the shifting of the earth's molten iron core which periodically causes the magnetic poles to switch; it could be the gravitational pull of the gas giants slightly altering the earth's orbit around the sun; it could be the earth's precession (wobble) that occasionally points the northern hemisphere more towards the sun. Bottom line is, THEY DON'T KNOW FOR SURE. If the earth is due for another long ice age, we'd BETTER warm it up in order to save civilization!

    And we must ask ourselves, is the heating of the earth a bad thing? Well, if you're a polar bear or you live 4 feet above sea level, sure. But less ice around the poles also means more temperate areas in the northern hemisphere–northern U.S., Canada, Russia, northern Europe. It also opens up shipping lanes and areas of exploration for minerals, oil and gas. That's a very good thing.

    Finally, and most importantly, Rubio is right when he says these laws the fear-mongering left-wing politicians want to pass won't do anything but kill our economy, because the biggest polluter–China–will keep on polluting!

    May 12, 2014 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
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