CNN’s Jake Tapper Exposes Trump Adviser Myron Ebell As Industry-Funded Climate Change Denier

From the November 16 edition of CNN's The Lead with Jake Tapper

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JAKE TAPPER (HOST): As the world tries to figure out just what comes next, one of the clearest policy differences between the current president and his successor, President-elect Trump, has to do with combating climate change. President-elect Trump has made no bones about his belief, contrary to the vast majority of scientists, that man-made climate change is not a legitimate phenomenon. And now he is tapping one of the nation’s leading climate change deniers to head the transition for the Environmental Protection Agency, someone who may not want the agency to exist at all. 


TAPPER: Suffice it to say, Donald Trump is not a big believer in man-made climate change, contrary to the views and data of the vast majority of scientists. 


DONALD TRUMP: Our plan will end the EPA, which is a -- hey, look, it's all wonderful, but it's a disaster. 


TAPPER: That's why the former EPA administrators under Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush hammered Trump during the election for pledging to yank the U.S. from the Paris accords, an international agreement to fight climate change, a move they said, quote, would set the world back decades. Leading the Trump transition team on environmental matters is an avid climate change denier. A man who was once funded by the tobacco industry to fight those seeking to further regulate cigarettes. Myron Ebell is the director of the Center For Energy And Environment, part of a libertarian think tank that, quote, questions global warming alarmism, partly funded by some of the same industries such as coal that are being hurt by the regulations of the fossil fuel industry. Ebell has long fought against environmental regulations, arguing they're an extension of government power. As he told PBS in 2012, he rejects the reams of data and evidence suggesting that man-made climate change is real. 


MYRON EBELL:  We believed that the so-called global warming consensus was not based on science but was a political consensus. 


TAPPER: That's rejecting evidence accepted by most scientists, as well as a growing number of Republicans, including former South Carolina Congressman Bob Inglis.


BOB INGLIS: It's really quite comical, really, to have one of the Merchants of Doubt as the head of EPA. That really would be a continuing joke on America. 


TAPPER: As founder of environmental group republicEn, Inglis says there must be a way everyone can move forward together. A balanced way. 


INGLIS: This is for real. And it’s happening to us now. We want to take care of the problem. It may be, just maybe, that somebody like Donald Trump could show that there is a free enterprise answer to climate change. But he won't show it if he's got Myron Ebell as the director -- as the administrator of EPA, however. 


TAPPER: Trump's appointee will also have the power to affect how we work with the international community to combat a changing environment that has proven deadly time and again. Ebell tops Trump's list less than a year after protesters publicly named him a climate criminal during an annual U.N. conference in Paris. 


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