Podesta panned Obama's climate record before joining as adviser

Before joining the White House last year, John Podesta suggested history wouldn't be kind to President Obama when it came to the issue of fighting climate change.

Podesta sat down for a two-hour interview with Harper's just a few weeks before he joined Obama's team as an adviser.

The magazine released excerpts of the interview on Monday, the same day that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) unveiled a landmark rule mandating 30 percent reductions in carbon emission from power plants across the U.S. by 2030.

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Podesta has been a driving force behind the effort. In 2013, when he was still serving as president of the liberal think tank Center for American Progress, he didn't mince words about Obama's actions on climate change.

"But 50 years from now, is that going to seem like enough?” Podesta said. “I think the answer to that is going to be no.”

Podesta faulted Obama for his back-and-forth record on climate change, blaming in part the president's top aides during his first term, Harper's reports.

Climate change simply wasn't a priority for the White House aides, Podesta said, recalling conversations in which one would say: "Yeah, fine, fine, fine, but it's ninth on our list of eight really important problems."