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tv   Meet the Press  MSNBC  December 30, 2018 3:00pm-4:00pm PST

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revvie awards. thanks for watching! have a happy holiday season. we'll see you next year. this sunday, the climate crisis. >> brace yourself for dangerous heat. >> the drought we're in is disastrous. we ought to be worried about it. >> about everything we own was destroyed. >> this is the eye wall with the strongest winds. the average temperature could be anywhere from 2 to 11 degrees. >> you can see how intense the flames are right now. >> the garden of eden just turned into the gates of hell. >> the evidence is everywhere.
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the science is settled. >> it would be easier if washington didn't deny science. >> climate change is real and it is an urgent problem that we need to bear down on. >> it's a snowball that just from outside here. so that's very very cold out, very unseasonable. here, mr. president, catch this. >> this morning we report on climate change, the science, the damage to our environment, the cost and the politics. welcome to sunday and this special edition of "meet the press." l edition of "meet the press. from nbc news, the longest running television show in history. this is a special edition of chuck todd. >> good morning and happy new year's weekend. we will do something we don't often get to do, dive in on one topic. it is often extraordinarily difficult to do this as thhas bn
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proven in the era of trump. we will talk about one subject that doesn't get talked about enough, climate change. it's important as what we are not going to do. we're not going to debate climate change, the existence of it. the earth is getting hotter and human activity is a cause. we won't give time to climate deniers. the science is proved. and a blizzard means it doesn't exist unless a blizzard hits miami. we have an expert to help us understand the science and consequences of climate changes an idea over it. kate from goddard space studies. craig fugate was president obama's administrator for a few
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years and led it for governor jeb bush before that. >> leading under president obama where she dealt with the climb changes and managing and cofounder of west exec advisors and our chief correspondent and carlos represents the most southern part of florida particularly threatened by climate change. coming up i will have conversations with former new york city mayor michael bloomberg and governor brown from california. but first a crisis ignored too long. >> reporter: they say economic impact would be devastating. >> i don't believe it. no, i don't believe it. >> reporter: in a walt poll, two-thirds believe action is needed to reverse climate change. and 45% serious enough for immediate action. a record high. climate related disasters from
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wildfires. >> we lost a lot. >> to more intense storms and floods already a serious let the and getting worse. >> it's rising way too fast. >> i was in such denial. i didn't put anything up, didn't grab anything. >> i saw the water mark in my basement, over my nose. the drive down here was almost -- hard seeing my place gone. >> glaciers are disappearing and arctic ice melt is producing rising sea levels and rewriting global weather patterns. all have come since 2014. and the rising temperatures have already cost the u.s. economy. >> there's serious consequences. we're talking about not necessarily weather, you and i have something to eat tonight, we're talking about the survival of the human species over a long term. >> reporter: this year, a series of climate reports, including one produced by 13 agencies in
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mr. trump's government, issued dire warnings of economic and human catastrophe if there is not immediate action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. but the federal response to the climate crisis has been political paralysis and denial. >> we keep hearing 2013 has been ne warmest on record. you see what this is? a snowball from outside here. it's very very cold out and unseasonable. mr. president, catch this. >> while the federal government lags behind, cities and states are attempting to lead their own climate efforts. >> we have wind turbines and solar panels. >> reporter: he voted for donald trump and last year his city became the first in texas to convert 100% renewable energy to power its grid. >> what can those knuckleheads
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in dced do to regulate that that increases our costs. >> reporter: pushed by progressives that want climate policies are calling for a green new deal. >> this is going to be the great society, moon shot, civil rights movement of our generation. >> reporter: while some democrats are mindful of the yellow jacket protests in paris, sparked by anger at a fuel tax, a majority of americans believe failing to address climate change will be more economically costly than new regulations designed to prevent global warming. democrats eyeing the white house are highlighting an issue once considered a political liability. >> climate change is real and it is urgent problem that we need to bear down on. >> every democrat running anywhere in america needs to make it a central message because the american people are with us. >> joining me now this is former mayor of new york city, michael bloomberg. the u.n. secretary general's special envoy for climate action
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and co-ah shore of "climate of hope." author. >> thank you. >> i want to take your thoughts on the yellow vests of paris. what went wrong and what france implemented what they did and your take away. >> you had people asked to do something and didn't understand what they were going to get out of it. you can take jerry brown that stood up for gasoline tax. some people didn't like it but he got it through because some understood it was a problem and didn't have the infrastructure they needed and needed to raise the revenue. they took that and taxed themselves because there was a value to them. i think the big problem we have right now is we have a climate change problem. the world is getting hotter, bigger storms than ever before. drought and floods, vice-versa, the water is getting less and we
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have to do something about it. we have this great challenge and we have an opportunity. the challenge is what we do about it and the opportunity is the value of what we do. that gets back to the same thing you were talking about in paris. >> i want to get you to react to something. we picked a state randomly out of the hat to pick people to ask questions of you. what do we choose? iowa, i half kid. this is a case where some barbecue fanatics will know who he is. an interesting observation about various climate change proposals. >> i don't care how good the idea is, i always feel in the end, someone or some organization it will benefit financially from it and the person that is getting it at the end are who didn't craft it or design it. it's your truck driver or farmers on the road trying to make a living. >> this to me goes back to yellow vest. when you talk to them.
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some are very much environmentalists, saying, i can't afford this, i don't live in paris and i don't have the same access to public transportation. how do you solve this? >> we have to find a way such as the guy on television. he says somebody else is going to make money. we have to make sure she is one of the beneficiaries. i have been spending my own money helping to train him and lots of other people like that. they are the ones i have to make sure wind up with the skills to take advantage of the new jobs. people want recognition and respect. too many people think, i know what's right for you, and don't bother with the details, let me do it. that is why you had people in paris in yellow jackets. that is why you had people here who voted for donald trump, i would argue is exactly that. that's what brexit is all about, macron is all about, people are saying, i don't want to be told what to do. i think if you can show somebody
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what's available and convince them to want it. that's what nobody's done with the guy who said, somebody else is going to get rich. he could be one of the beneficiaries. incidentally, if companies don't make money they won't have jobs and you want them to make money. we have to match the skillset. >> what would be the impact if we rejoined the paris agreement today? >> not a lot. we are halfway there towards meeting our goals already. somebody said, you will never get this, ridiculous to think america will meet its goals. we're halfway there already and there's seven years left to go. the economics of coal, nobody will stop the reduction in the although of coal. we had done a bunch of things we promised to do under that agreement trump said we're not going to do, he walked away. we decided in the -- >> he hasn't fully walked way, has he? we have representatives in
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poland. >> he can't pull out until 2020. that's the deal. america owed some money to help pay for the management of these programs. he walked away from it. in the end, he did some of it or the federal government did some. i think my foundation give them 5 million dollars to pay what our obligation is. he didn't walk away from it because he didn't have a lot to do with it. all of the things done or motion of them have been done by the private sector, individuals and companies. >> is that the real answer? give up on government? >> no, government, it would be more helpful if we had a climate champion than denier in the white house. um trump has a right to his own opinions but not his own facts. this world is in trouble. icecaps melting and stomps getting greater. in south carolina about a month ago they had 3 feet of rain. do you know how high 3 feet is? >> why do you think people want
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to deny climate change? >> number one, people don't. >> you think that's a phony argument when people deny it? >> no. i supported 24 congressional candidates and 21 won. we did lots of polling creating ads for them. 75% said they believed in climate change. you mentioned iowa. iowa now generates one-third of its entire energy from wind. they, in a few years will be 100%. there's a town, georgetown, texas, a republican mayor, 100% renewables. people believe. you see forest fires that may hit your house, you become a believer pretty quickly. >> let's talk about how a presidential campaign and sort of president-elect r presidential focus -- there's some people that say climate change is a policy paper you put out and others that say every
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proposal you do in washington has to be through the lens of dealing with climate change whether it's your economic plan. where are you on that? >> i think any candidate for federal office darned well better have a plan to deal with the problem. the trump science advisors say could basically end this world. even his science advisors. >> is it fair if you run for president and if you happen to do it all your policy proposals will be through the lens of -- >> the presidency is not an entry level job. we have real problems. if you don't come in with real concrete answers, i think the public is tired of listening to the same platitudes they get, we're in favor of god, mother and apple pie. trust me, i'll have plan when i get there. no, you have to have a plan. i can tell you one thing, i don't know whether i will run or not, will be out there hearing anybody that esrunning has plan.
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i want them to look at it and see whether it's doable. >> before i let you go, what's your timeline deciding whether you will run and what would be the factor if you didn't? >> timeline is january, into february maybe, there's no rush to do it. everybody wants to know what you're going to do. the bottom line is i'm not sure yet. i care for a bunch of issues, care for my kids and this country that's been so good to me. i want to see how i can help the best. right now, my foundation and company, i give 100% of the company's profits or my share of them to the foundation. we support an awful lot of things we're doing that let us explain to people how to do things and give them options, not telling them what to do. i think i can make the world a better place in the private sector? can i make it a better place in the public sector? maybe. i did 12 years in city hall.
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i think most people liked what i did. do i think i can be a good president? yes. i'm not the only one who can be a good president. i disagree with the current president on so many things i don't know where to start. >> are you trying to figure out if the democratic party will accept you? >> i would certainly run as a democrat, much closer to their philosophy. i don't agree with everything. you would have to run as a democrat. if you go out and explain what you do. i got elected in new york city, overwhelming democratic city, overwhelming minority city and i got elected three times so i must know something about this. >> michael bloomberg, always a pleasure to talk with you. thanks for sharing your views. when we come back, our panel of experts to talk to us about the environmental and economic risks and consequences of climate change. sks and conseque climate change
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let's jump right into the panel. no offense to everybody else, dr. marvel, how do you explain the urgency to america? that has been the challenge and came through in the michael bloomberg energy. explain the challenge we're facing. >> i wish i had a good answer to that. as scientists, we're tempted to show more data and maps and there will be a magic equation that will convince everybody. there isn't. i don't think a lot of reluctance about science change
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isn't about the science, values and deep story how people see themselves. i think it's really important for scientists to engage with people in communities. >> it feels overwhelming. the science feels overwhelming, i'll be honest, it just does. >> it feels overwhelming. we're talking about something that affects the planet we live on, heat waves and floods and drought and hurricanes. it should feel overwhelming because it is overwhelming. >> you traveled the globe for us to show us what's happening, not just say what's happening. >> that's important. i always liken climate change to cancer, huge issues, hard to get your head wrapped around.
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take a trip to glacier national paragraph in montana. in 1850 the industrial revolution started we started burning coal sending greenhouse gas is in the air. there were 150 glaciers in the national park. today, they're in 26 and we're in danger of losing the 26, they're threatened. fish are moving north to get to warmer waters. we're seeing changes here. and the reason why we're seeing more people believe in it today we're now starting to live climate change in real-time in the united states. >> speaking of real-time maybe it's this financial impact that will spark things. with continued growth in emissions at historic rates annual loss in some economic sectors are projected to reach hundreds of billions of
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dollars -- and this year alone, disaster, the cost of three disasters. hurricane michael, $25 billion. $50 billion for hurricane florence. craig fugate, can you convince people with dollars and cents? >> i don't know if you can convince them with dollars and cents but the sheer frequency of events occurring. every time this is a record setting event, almost all the practices looking to the past to prepare for the future is not working. look at all the money we're spending. when fema is spending money, that's for uninsured losses. we've seen the largest transfer like fema and hud and the national insurance program. actually looking at the policy of why are we growing disaster risk in the face of climate change with policies that in
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tenty vise growth. we just authorized policies in the flood zone. >> we shouldn't be doing it. >> i have one simple answer, why not stop writing flood insurance and let the private sector insure it and if they don't, why not? >> well flood insurance won't do it. >> it is interesting, there is a very strong consensus in the u.s. military that climate change is real. for the military, they see this as leading to a change in their mission, more humanitarian assistance, disaster relief missions abroad and at home. they see the melting of icecap in the arctic. that will open up an area of astronomic competition with russia and china. >> just pause. i don't want to gloss over that. here we are worried about what the melting icecaps do to our life, meantime, it will become a
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military fight. >> absolutely. new channels of commerce and china and russia stated claims they will contend the place. more than half of the u.s. military bases overseas are estimated to be severely impacted by climate change, either severe weather and/or flooding. that's our ability to project power overseas. that's our ability to operate our u.s. military. 50% of the facilities will be affected. >> think about the cost of defense as it is today. >> look at tindell air force base got hit by michael. you had f-22s in hangar destroyed. think how few of those we have here. >> as you can see i was trying to make a point here. can the economy do it, national security do it? maybe the state of florida can do it, the most important state in presidential politics, carlos. if floridians change their mindset on this, there's a 1 in 20 chance nearly half a billion
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dollars in property value in the state of florida will be under sea level before the end of this century. i have to play for you this, our hometown, not just your hometown, miami, what a university of miami geologist had to say. >> i think somewhere later in the century, miami as we know it, is going to be unlivable. in reality in south florida, we're just going to be leaving. we don't have the problem. you in orlando, you better set aside your groundwater resources and you better plan for us. you really better plan because we are coming. >> does florida change the country's mindset on this? >> it can because it's where the effects of climate change are most evident. we get tidal flooding in south florida. >> explain what that is. >> king tide comes, meaning lunar cycle, the tide is the strongest and our roads literally flood. >> once a month. no rains, no anything.
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i want to remind people what this is. >> big threat to the drinking supply. the glade houses all the water for south florida. as the saltwater comes in, it threatens that water supply. ocean acidification, carbon dioxide content in the ocean, essential to ocean ecosystem. the point ann made is so important. we need to stop covering the debate and start covering the story so people see this is real and politics take a more pragmatic approach and find solutions actually achievable. >> if you think those high tides bother you once a month. wait until they happen everyday. if we don't do something about cutting our greenhouse emissions, that will happen, not just in miami, in virginia, newport news and where the naval bases are. they're already dealing with that high tide flooding. it will affect places like new york and boston and cape cod.
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new orleans, we're going to have big problems. >> live in new york. the subway is projected to flood every five years by the middle of the century. every year by the end of the century. i don't want the subway to flood. >> you think it's miserable now. >> right. >> this goes back to 2012, superstorm sandy makes landfall, we're going up to see governor christie and president obama turns to me, craig, we have to stop about it and work on adaptation. we always thought this would be something 50 years away. it's now. we haven't built for this and the change and the build for it while we're still denying it, we're losing. >> the displacement of americans, how many millions of americans live in an area that could be unlivable in 50 years? we're talking millions, right, doctor? >> many. it's not just florida.
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not just coastal communities. warm air holds more water vapor. even if you live in the midwest, you will see increased downpours. for agricultural, the consequences are significant. >> if you look globally, we are a pretty strong economy. we're a very powerful nation. think of all the countries that are going to experience massive population movements and have nowhere withal whatsoever to deal with that kind of pressure and instability and conflict. >> do you see how overwhelming this feels? doctor, what's the one thing we can do right now? give me one thing. the thing i actually find kind of perversely comforting is the fact we know exactly what's causing this. can you imagine if this were a natural cycle we didn't have any control over? we know exactly what's causing this. it's us, greenhouse gags emissions we're putting in the atmosphere. as a scientist, i can tell you, let's not do that anymore. >> really, it's just about those
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guys. >> these guys. >> about -- no offense. >> yeah. i'm not a scientist. they phrase it, used in the past by politics. there are two halves to this, mitigation, means we reduce carbon dioxide emissions and adaptation we're starting to make progress in congress and investments and infrastructure that will protect properties and people from these effects. >> we've done a lot on the science and impact. later, i want to get into practical ideas including the carbon tax. is that the right way to go. let me pause. few states have been hit harder by climate change than our biggest state, california. governor jerry brown joins us next. oins us next when we were dating, we used to get excited about things like concert tickets or a new snowboard. matt: whoo! whoo! jen: but that all changed when we bought a house. matt: voilà! jen: matt started turning into his dad. matt: mm. that's some good mulch.
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we're chartering areas and terrains we haven't been before in the last couple of decades. >> no longer the new norm. this just is our norm. we will continue to see large fires grow faster than we have ever seen them. >> welcome back. california had the largest most destructive fires than we've seen in the state's history
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including what became known as "the campfire" that killed 86 people and destroyed more than 14,000 homes. the man who has led the state of california for a combined 16 years is jerry brown, outgoing governor, outspoken on this issue. since his first term in the 1970s, governor jerry brown is where the management personnel oversee the disaster response and recovery, online going all the time now. welcome to "meet the press." >> good to be here. the first time i was here -- i was just going to say the first time i was on this show was, i think, 1975. we have a long history. >> we are. we do have a long history. the world wildfire is not in flint without california. you have seen your share of natural disasters. try to put into context what you've experienced this year and why it's bigger than just a
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wildfire issue this time. >> well, it's bigger because the fire season instead of being a few months around the summer and a little bit in the fall is year long and we saw that with the fires both in the north and the southern part of the state at the same time. that hasn't happened before. usually one would burn and then it would stop and then the southern part of the state would burn with the santa ana winds. so it's new, and it leads not just to fires. it leads to mud slides and then, of course, you see with the heavy storms and rain as the snows melt faster or they don't come at all, we will find a lot of inundation of a good part of the state. so we see it. we see it in the fear in people's eyes as they fled. the elderly who died. this is real, it's dangerous and we've got to wake up the country
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and wake up the world and we have to start with the man in the white house that requires raking leaves in the bottom of the forest there. >> i was just going to say and he came out and toured, frankly, it was after that weird comment he made about raking, and you seem to -- did you feel like you made any progress in convincing him this is not something that's distinctive or unique to now. this is a larger issue with the climate? >> no, i don't think i did. i do appreciate that he came, that the president has made funding available under the emergency acts of congress so that's all good. but i would say he is very convinced of his position and his position is that there's nothing abnormal about the fires in california or the rising sea level or all of the other incidents of climate change. >> you've both been a mayor and a governor.
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you've had to see people become temporary refugees from their home. at what point do you feel that politicians in positions like the governorship of california are going to have to start proposing restrictions on where people live and basically saying, you know what? we just can't build here because we can't afford to basically maintain people living this close to the water or living this close to wildfire damage or living this close to a place that's susceptible to mud slides? >> now we've got to -- we have to make those proposals now, but we already have restrictions. people want to build housing in flood plains. california prevents that, but the zone of danger from fire and flood is far bigger, much bigger. so the politics of that will unfold slowly, but the facts are on the ground and the politicians, however painful
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it will be politically, will follow, of course, now to restrict building in areas that are just too dangerous. >> i'm curious about the yellow invest movement and what you think, why that has been such a struggle for macron there. i want to take away what lessons we should take away here. joanna heier which is in the city lab. she is a uc davis post-graduate student writes this, if everyone in the state, talking about california, if everyone in the state had equal access to quality public transportation the gas tax would be a fair incentive to motivate people to ditch their cars. as it is it punishes people to not have a chance to transit options to meet their needs. it seems to me the yellow vest in france is a disconnect there. you won your gas tax fight, but rural californians didn't like it. >> no, they don't. they don't like a lot of things. they voted against housing bonds and they voted for the
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republican cox who didn't even make 40%. and there is a divide in california and the red is different from the blue and it's associated definitely with rural areas, but i would say in terms of what happened in france, i believe the president cut back on taxes for the very wealthy and at the same time he imposed what is essentially sales tax and working on poor people and that is very different than our own gas tax and when we tax the wealthy and very substantially and then we went to the state and said stick and reaffirm this gas tax and they did by over 13 points. it's incredible. people are ready to build if they believe the money will be spent right and they understand it's helping their community. so yes, we need more rapid transit. we need trains and we need more efficient cars and all of that, and that's why this climate change is not just adapting.
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it's inventing new technology. it's instead of complaining about the chinese putting all their money into batteries and artificial intelligence and new kind of cars, we have to put more money in america. so instead of worrying about tariffs, i'd like to see the president and the congress invest tens of billions in renewable energy and more efficient batteries to get us off fossil fuel as quickly as we can. i would point to the fact that it took roosevelt many, many years to get america willing to go into world war ii and fight the nazis. we have an enemy, though different, very much devastating in a similar way, and we have to fight climate change and the president has to lead on that. d >> i want to get you to respond to something that was in "the l.a. times." earlier this month by wesley. in recent years the state has suffered an array of environmental woes to varying degree, climate related, jerry
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brown's climate efforts has been profoundly important and it's a measure of the breadth of the environmental crisis that they haven't been nearly enough. it was both complementary and at the same time, not enough. is that how you leave the governorship? it wasn't enough? or is there still more that you could have done? >> not even close. we're doing more than anybody else and not close in america with the rest of the world. look, we've got to get those zero emission cars on the road. we have to figure out new ways of making cement. we have to clean up our ships which are creating more pollution than california and texas put together. the technology, the investment, the lifestyle changes, the land use changes and this is a revolutionary threat and we've got to get off this idea it's the economy, stupid. no, it's the environment and the ecology that we have to get on the side of and we only do that with wisdom, with investment and
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widespread collaboration and working together. so that's a good criticism. some of his ideas, i thought, were not as important as the ones we're trying to push. >> but i knew it would bring out that final answer and it was about as good of a summary of what needs to be done as anybody put together. >> governor jerry brown, you've been coming on "meet the press" since 1975. i hope this is not your last appearance. >> i hope not either. >> all right. >> when it comes to climate change, everyone agrees it's happening. well, almost everyone. next. ♪ ♪ my experience with usaa
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welcome back. "data download" time. after years of contentious debate on climate change, new polling this year seems to suggest that americans are finally starting to form a consensus on this issue. more people are willing to accept that it's happening and that humans are responsible, but there is a serious political divide. according to a study from yale and george mason university, 70% of americans say global warming is happening and 57% believe it's mostly caused by human activity, and in fact, the 66% of people in our latest nbc news/wall street journal poll who believe climate change is a serious problem that does need to be addressed, that's a 15-point increase since 1999. we're down to just 30% who say we need more research or we shouldn't be concerned.
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a 13 point drop in that same time period. this is significant because the feelings about climate change are remarkably uniform no matter your skin tone or where you live. over 60% of white, african-americans believe we need to do something about climate change and more than 50% of those who live in cities, suburbs and rural america agree. but if the public has reached a consensus why hasn't washington? well, we see the biggest idea of climate change, 75% of democrat believes that's a serious problem. 71% of democrats believe it needs immediate action. a 42-point increase since 1999. 47% of independents agree, a 22-point jump. a republican opinion, stagnant on the issue. only 15% believe climate change is an urgent problem. the exact same number when we first asked this question in 1999. look, these numbers in particular serve as a reminder that no matter how much the public at large may agree on
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something, we live in a two-party political system and the two parties do not see eye to eye on whether to even address the issue let alone on how to address it. as long as that's the case it's hard to see how the public consensus will lead to action in washington. when we come back, the panel is back with that question. how to deal with the tricky politics of climate change. e che
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>> it is absolutely imperative that we get our act together on this issue regarding the future of the planet. >> this idea that science is just absolutely settled and if you don't believe it's settled then you're somehow another se then you're somehow a neanderthal. that is so inappropriate. >> back now with "end game" and trying to break the political paralysis. carlos, you wanted to introduce a carbon tax. but as we're watching what's unfolding in france and the pushback there, is a carbon tax doable? is this the way to do it? is a vice tax the way to go? >> it's the most efficient, most logical and probably the most politically viable solution. mayor bloomberg and governor brown tried to make this point. the key is that the people who are being taxed -- in this case all the american people trust that the revenues are going to be put to good use. that's why in the bill i filed
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we put most of it to infrastructure. that's popular in this country and most believe we have to invest in our infrastructure. we also set aside some funds to mitigate higher utility rates for lower income americans. that is the key. and we know this is true because in miami, recently they just passed a $200 million bond referendum, property tax increase to fund coastal infrastructure because the citizens understood the funds were going to be put to good united states to protect them. >> it does seem as if the regressive nature perhaps, anne. how do you -- the person that doesn't live near an easy to access public transportation point and the cost of fossil fuels? theng >> the question is can you help them see the value. if it will help people ensure that you have cleaner air, less extreme weather events, that you
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have access to cleaner water. if people see a value in it, they might buy into it. >> our most trusted institutions are the military these days. and it does seem as if, since in the military, there's been more experience with seeing it in real time. >> the military tends to be clear eyed and pragmatic about threats and it's a planning culture. they like to look way off into the future and what's interesting is while the trump administration has been trying to take reference to the word climate change out of the national security center out of the defense strategy, out of dod reports, and to cut funding where it can, meanwhile, the congress in the last two national defense authorization acts has played a really, really important role. sort of putting in reporting requirements every service has to identify the ten most vulnerable bases and mitigation efforts. you have to come up with an arctic strategy for when the ice melts. you have to, as a combatant commander, factor climate change into your operational planning.
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this gives the department top cover. i actually think there's a role for the military as that respected institution to sort of be truth speakers on this and to say this is real. we're planning for it. we're going to have to spend money it in order to protect the country. let's get over it and get on with it. >> this is an interesting dynamic in the congress as the president has acted irresponsibly on climate and made some reckless comments. more and more republicans in the house have moved to embrace this issue, to accept the science. when i got to congress in 2015, there were maybe two or three republicans even willing to utter the words climate change. today we have over 40 on the roon the record acknowledging this is a real issue that requires government action and they jointed the caucus. >> we were talking during the break about you thought you were equating it to the tobacco companies and issues. i'm curious what you make of the
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lawsuit strategy that we're seeing. the crab fishermen. four lawsuits here. these are just this year. lawsuits against oil companies. the crab fishermen versus 30 fossil fuel companies. the state of new york versus exxon. rhode island versus chevron. this idea of holding them accountable. is that a smart strategy? >> we saw what happened to tobacco. individual suits didn't make any difference but when the attorneys general got together, they settled. investors want to protect their investments and they see these exposures getting worse. this is the other part of the carbon tax. we have to price risk what it really costs. over $100 billion last year was put into disasters that could have been saved. if we had been doing sufahead of time. so i think part of this is how do we price our risko we're not building it the same way we've always done. they are seeing the short sidedness of v.s that have multidecades to pay back that
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are going to be disrupted in years. >> you're already seeing that in the energy sector. we had 20 coal plants that had been retired this year. coal is at its lowest point since 1979 when jimmy carter put solar panels on the white house the first time. and when you look at what utility companies are doing, dte in michigan, in southeastern michigan, this year broke ground on a new natural gas plant. a billion-dollar investment. retiring five coal plants. investing in renewables. economically, coal doesn't make sense anymore. natural gas renewables do. >> i'm curious the impact of the trump administration has rolled back a few of the actions of the obama administration that targeted some climate issues. they did a freeze on the gas mileage standards. reversed obama regulations. the epa rolled back some methane rules. also rolled back other rules having to do with coal. has that -- how much has that set us back? a decade back? how much time does it take to
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sort of get this -- just get back on the path we were three years ago? >> it's not a good idea. but i think we have seen a lot of action in the private sector and at the statemore importantly at the local level. that's not a yes or no question or a black and white question. we have, you know, president trump has signaled his intent to withdraw from the paris agreement. but we've seen this movement called we are still in. people are still adhering to the paris goals. so i think i'm not going to say it's good news because it's not, but i think it's not necessarily as catastrophic as it might otherwise be. >> what -- i guess are there -- is there any individual actions anymore or is this just so large that individuals -- is this one of these? i remember going back to jimmy carter. was this collective action. if everyone can do their little part. it feels like with climate change it's all stuck. >> we really do need national policy that will become
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international policy. that's why in a lot of these carbon -- >> we make changes as a country, we galvanize. is there a way to galvanize? craig fugate is there a way to galvanize? >> this is no longer something in the future. one of the regulations was the federal flood plain management standard which says quit builting one foot. let's build two feet above flood levels. all the disasters in the last two years, we just missed all that rebuilding to build the future risk. >> what would you do if you could do this? how would you shake us by the lapels? >> i get frustrated because i hear this administration say two things. first of all, when they talk about pulling out of paris, they talk about -- they say, look. we've reduced greenhouse gas emissions. we've reduced greenhouse gas emissions because people have turned away from coal and that's what thus administration is promoting. so it just makes no sense. >> all right. what a tremendous hour. thank you guys for your time and thoughts. that's all we have for today. thank you for watching this
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sunday morning. on behalf of all of us at "meet the press" a happy and safe new year. we'll be back next week, or i guess i should say next year because, if it's sunday, it's "meet the press." the meeting of the executive finance committee is now in session. and... adjourned. business loans for eligible card members up to fifty thousand dollars, decided in as little as 60 seconds. the powerful backing of american express. don't do business without it.
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for each job exxonmobil creates, many more are created in the community. because energy touches so many industries, it supports 10 million u.s. jobs. ♪ welcome to "kasie dc." i'm kasie hunt. tonight if you thought 2018 was wild, just wait until 2019. we'll look back at a crazy year in politics and preview what next year has in store. plus, i'll talk to a republican congressman who won't be back next year. the lessons they learned and the lessons for their colleagues as they try to restore regular order. and i'll be joined by my