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UW professor's blog post about adapting to climate change infuriates activists

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Democratic presidential candidate Gov. Jay Inslee address a student Climate Strike rally at Columbia University, March 15, 2019 in New York. Inslee's portrayal of climate change in his presidential campaign induces a persuasive blog post about the so-called "existential threat" by a UW climate science professor, Cliff Mass. (Bebeto Matthews / Associated Press)

"The hype and exaggeration about climate change has just been amp'ed up continuously, particularly the last year or two," University of Washington atmospheric science professor, Cliff Mass, tells KVI's John Carlson.

Mass addressed this schism on his blog earlier this week writing, "During the recent presidential debate, a number of candidates suggested that global warming represents an existential threat to mankind, and thus requires dramatic and immediate action. An existential threat is one that threatens the very existence of mankind. An existential threat must have the potential to undermine the very viability of human civilization...global warming is a serious problem and its impacts will be substantial but in no way does it seriously threaten our species or human civilization."

In an interview on KVI, Carlson asked Mass about the vindictive reaction he's received for posting these conclusions with Mass responding, "This whole issue has become terribly politicized." Mass explained, "Obviously its become a very political issue and as that's happened one side has kinda hyped things up and that's a real problem."

Mass says climate change is a "serious issue" but adds, "This whole business is much more nuanced than the media talks about. Well, the temperature is warming. (Now) How much of that is due to us and how much of that is due to other issues? That's a question. But I would say a significant portion of it, the best science (says) a significant portion of the warming the last few decades has mankind's signature on it. So there's no doubt about that."

Where Mass differs from some of the activists and political candidates or elected officials is that he says humans will be able to adapt because the changes will happen slowly.

For the full interview, click the image above.


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