Earlier this month, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said that he doesn’t think carbon dioxide is the primary driver of climate change. (Spoiler alert: it definitely is.) This wasn’t just the regular variety of climate change denial, it was a rejection of the most basic, rudimentary science.
If there was an annual award for the most intellectually offensive statement on science made by an American politician – let’s call it the James Inhofe Award – then EPA chief Scott Pruitt looked to be a shoe-in for it. However, a little known Pennsylvanian Republican State Senator by the name of Scott Wagner might have just clinched the ignominious accolade.
When asked to explain his opinions on climate change to the general public at a recent event in Harrisburg, he said this: “We have more people. You know, humans have warm bodies. So is heat coming off? Things are changing, but I think we are, as a society, doing the best we can.”
Correct. This actual US State Senator, one of the most powerful politicians in the world, thinks that human bodies are heating up the planet and that, ladies and gentlemen, is why climate change is happening.
Sen. James Inhofe, who infamously used a snowball to "prove" climate change was a myth. C-SPAN via YouTube
Here’s the thing, though – that’s insane. We are not capable of giving off so much heat that the entire planet is heating up 170 times faster than would naturally be expected. Why did this not happen when the dinosaurs, with their massive heat-emitting bodies, ruled the world?
This is perhaps the weirdest example of correlation not equaling causation. You might as well say that because the woolly mammoth is now extinct, temperatures are rising because their furry coats kept all that nefarious heat trapped inside them. Now that they aren’t around, we’re boiling to death.