Trump Navy secretary nominee: Climate change is real and poses a threat

Trump Navy secretary nominee: Climate change is real and poses a threat
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President Trump’s Navy secretary nominee said Tuesday he is “totally aware” of the threat posed by climate change and committed to addressing it if confirmed.

“The Navy is totally aware of rising water issues, storm issues, etc.” nominee Richard V. Spencer told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday.

“We must protect our infrastructure, and I will work hard to make sure we are keeping an eye on that because without the infrastructure, we lose readiness.”

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Spencer was answering a question about climate change from Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenScaramucci deletes old tweets bashing Trump Trump's new communications chief once called him a 'hack' OPINION | Hey Dems, Russia won't define 2018, so why not fix your party's problems instead? MORE (D-Mass.), who noted the Navy had previously established climate change as an operational and national security threat.

The Navy released a climate change “roadmap” in 2010 that called it a “national security challenge with strategic implications for the Navy.”

The Pentagon has long considered climate change a threat. Defense Secretary James Mattis has said he believes the science of climate change and that it is “impacting stability in areas of the world where our troops are operating today.” 

Trump, though, has raised doubts about the science behind climate change, calling it a “hoax” created by the Chinese and rolling back Obama-era polices designed to address it.