As the 2018 hurricane season approaches, Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are trying to put a stop to the rampant climate denial in the Trump administration.
The position of Homeland Security Advisor has not been exempt from this trend.
"[Tom] Bossert, who served as Homeland Security Advisor since January 2017 until his resignation last month, had refused to acknowledge the overwhelming scientific consensus that human-induced climate change contributes to severe weather events," said a statement from Warren's office.
Warren and Sanders have a simple solution.
Since the Homeland Security Advisor is responsible for overseeing the response to hurricanes and other natural disasters, and those natural disasters will likely be worsened by climate change, the next candidate should have a basic understanding of climate science.
"Without a dedicated federal effort to reduce the quantity of greenhouse gasses that human activity releases into the atmosphere, climate change will continue to worsen and cause increasingly severe weather events, including hurricanes," the two senators wrote in a letter to the President.
"Climate change is having and will have a tangible and harmful impact on our national security and disaster readiness."
In his time as Homeland Security Advisor, Bossert refused to acknowledge the risk that climate change posed to national security in the form of severe weather events.
"While commenting on the federal response to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, for example, Mr. Bossert stated that your Administration takes the issue of climate change "seriously," but "not the cause of it but the things that we observe," and that "causality" was "outside of [his] ability to analyze" in the midst of the hurricane response," the senators wrote.
The senators pointed out that these "evasive" comments directly contradict the most recent National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that "climate change is a direct threat to the national security of the United States."
The slow response and recovery to recent natural disasters such as Hurricane Maria, Harvey and Irma, reveals the important role that the Homeland Security Advisor will play as severe weather events continue to threaten the safety and security of the entire nation.
The Trump administration has not yet announced a replacement, but with more than half of the Trump cabinet denying the reality of climate change, the chances of Trump appointing a non-climate denier to the position is slim.
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