The incoming head of America's Environmental Protection Agency, climate skeptic Scott Pruitt, said Thursday he believes that carbon dioxide is not a primary contributor to global warming. A known fossil-fuel ally, Pruitt's appointment to head the EPA - a department he repeatedly sued as a state attorney general - was deeply contentious. 'I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there's tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact, so no, I would not agree that it's a primary contributor to the global warming that we see,' Pruitt told CNBC's Squawk Box Thursday. At odds: New EPA boss Scott Pruitt's stance is at odds with the international scientific consensus that underpins the landmark Paris Agreement Emissions: Scott Pruitt said that carbon dioxide emissions were not'a primary contributor' to global warming. This past January was the third warmest on record, a new analysis of global temperatures has revealed.
WASHINGTON -- The new chief of the Environmental Protection Agency said Thursday he does not believe that carbon dioxide is a primary contributor to global warming, a statement at odds with mainstream scientific consensus and his own agency. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said measuring the effect of human activity on the climate is "very challenging" and that "there's tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact" of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. "So, no, I would not agree that (carbon dioxide) is a primary contributor to the global warming that we see," Pruitt told CNBC's "Squawk Box." Pruitt's view is contrary to mainstream climate science, including NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the EPA itself. NASA and NOAA reported in January that earth's 2016 temperatures were the warmest ever. The planet's average surface temperature has risen about 2 degrees Fahrenheit since the late 19th century, "a change driven largely by increased carbon dioxide and other human-made emissions into the atmosphere," the agencies said in a joint statement.
Another Trump administration nominee to lead a major science agency danced around the topic of human-caused global warming, going just far enough to avoid seeming like a rabid climate denier, while remaining out of step with mainstream climate research findings. This time the nominee was Oklahoma Republican Rep. Jim Bridenstine, nominated to lead NASA. In addition to its more well-known space exploration missions, NASA is also one of the biggest players in Earth science research, running satellites that track carbon dioxide in the planet's atmosphere, monitor changes in the ice sheets, and maintain records on global average surface temperatures. SEE ALSO: There's a serious danger to the soft climate denial pedaled by Trump's cabinet picks During Bridenstine's hearing on Wednesday before the Senate Commerce, Space, and Transportation Committee, one senator in particular worked to pin down the congressman's views on global warming. U.S. Rep. and NASA nominee Jim Bridenstine, R-Tulsa, speaks in Tulsa, Okla.