Democratic Senator Bernie Sanders said that the unparalleled rainfall which resulted in floods from Hurricane Harvey should spark a debate about climate change.
“I think it is pretty dumb not to ask some hard questions about why more rain is now falling and has fallen in the Houston area, as I understand it, than any time that people can have measured,” Sanders told CNN’s Chris Cuomo.
Sanders said that the first priority should be saving people’s lives and making sure that those affected be safe and have adequate housing, adding that climate change is also something that must be addressed.
Hurricane Harvey has brought Texas an amount of rainfall that has been unheard of, breaking the U.S. record for rainfall from a single storm, according to CNN senior meteorologist Dave Hennen. Almost 52 inches of rain have been measured in some areas of Texas and the full scope of the storm destruction is yet unknown.
“Is it related to climate change? Is some of the intensity and the magnitude of this related to Climate change? I think most scientists believe it is,” Sanders said.
“The right question to be asking is ‘what does this mean for the future?'”
On Wednesday night, Cuomo spoke with Trump administration official Kellyanne Conway and asked whether President Donald Trump’s administration would be open to a conversation about the role climate change could have played in the storm.
“Chris, we’re trying to help the people whose lives are literally underwater, and you want to have a conversation about climate change?” Conway responded.
“It is my view that Trump is dead wrong when he talks about climate change being a hoax; I think it is a very serious, serious problem for our country and around the world,” Sanders said Thursday.