- Bill Nye made a guest appearance on Sunday’s episode of “Last Week Tonight,” in which John Oliver, the show’s host, discussed the Green New Deal.
- In Nye’s segment, he torched a globe, saying “the planet’s on f—ing fire” – a reference to the rising temperatures caused by greenhouse-gas emissions.
- Nye added, “you’re not children anymore. I didn’t mind explaining photosynthesis to you when you were 12, but you’re adults now and this is an actual crisis.”
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One of America’s most famous science communicators is pissed off, and the kiddie gloves are off.
Bill Nye is best known for his 1990s public television program, “Bill Nye the Science Guy,” but he has since made many appearances in films and television shows, served as a science adviser for the Obama administration, and recently hosted a Netflix documentary series called “Bill Nye Saves the World.”
On Sunday, Nye joined the talk-show host John Oliver on “Last Week Tonight” to offer up a fiery public service announcement. In the segment, Oliver was discussing the Green New Deal, a proposed set of regulations and initiatives that hopes to make the US carbon-neutral in 10 years and create jobs in the process. The concept has been championed by many Democrats, notably Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Oliver said it has catalyzed a debate about climate legislation across the country (even though Green New Deal legislation has stagnated in Congress).
Oliver added, however, that we’re far from out of the woods when it comes to curbing carbon emissions. Then he invited Nye to share his thoughts on the matter – and Nye got real.
Wearing his familiar lab coat, bow tie, and safety glasses, Nye stood behind a table. In front of him sat a globe, a bucket of sand, a flame-retardant blanket, and a fire extinguisher.
“I’ve got an experiment for you – safety glasses on,” he said. “By the end of this century, if emissions keep rising, the average temperature on Earth could go up another 4 to 8 degrees. What I’m saying is the planet’s on f—ing fire.”
Then Nye pulled a blowtorch from under the table and set the globe alight.
“There are a lot of things we could do to put it out. Are any of them free?” Nye asked, pointing to the three objects on the table that could extinguish the flames.
“No, of course not – nothing’s free, you idiots. Grow the f— up,” he said. “You’re not children anymore. I didn’t mind explaining photosynthesis to you when you were 12, but you’re adults now and this is an actual crisis. Got it? Safety glasses off motherf—ers.”
Here’s the clip:
Here are some of the real and scary numbers behind Nye’s tirade:
- The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere (which traps heat) just hit the highest level it’s been since the dawn of humanity some 3 million years ago.
- Last year was the warmest on record for the planet’s oceans and the fourth warmest year ever for the planet itself.
- According to a recent United Nations report, up to 1 million species will likely go extinct, many within decades, in part because of climate change.
The scientist has good reason to be angry.
You can watch the full segment from “Last Week Tonight” below.
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