The Sierra Club on Tuesday mocked Donald Trump over his refusal during the first presidential debate to admit that he called climate change a “hoax” perpetrated by China.
The top environmental group, which is backing Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, released a time-lapse ad of a melting ice sculpture of the Republican presidential nominee. The video was spliced with his previous comments calling global climate change a hoax.
“All of it with the global warming, and the that — it’s a hoax. It’s a money-making industry, OK?” Trump said at a campaign rally in 2015, in comments the Sierra Club included in its ad.
The ad also featured Trump telling Fox News host Bill O’Reilly that he “might have” called climate change a Chinese hoax.
During Monday night’s presidential debate, Clinton criticised Trump during the presidential debate for his past comments on climate change, admonishing the Republican presidential nominee while touting her plan to create jobs in the clean energy sector.
“Donald Trump thinks that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese,” Clinton said.
Trump responded by asserting the Obama administration’s regulations on forms of energy like coal were destroying jobs. Though those regulations have likely affected the number of coal-sector jobs, there appear to be net gains in clean-energy industries that have statistically offset the losses nationwide.
“I’m a great believer in all forms of energy. But we’re putting a lot of people out of work — our energy policy is a disaster,” Trump said.
Later during the debate, the real-estate magnate criticised Obama for his warnings about the threats of climate change.
“The single greatest problem the world has is nuclear armament, nuclear weapons, not global warming, like you think and your — your president thinks,” Trump said to Clinton.
The Sierra Club characterised Trump’s statements about climate change as out of touch with the overwhelming scientific body of evidence supporting the notion that man-made climate change poses an imminent threat.
“Donald Trump got caught melting down on another lie last night, and this one may be one of the most consequential yet,” Sierra Club National Political Director Khalid Pitts said. “During the debate Trump proved that he cannot be trusted on anything, especially when it comes to tackling the climate crisis. Our country can’t afford to have the only climate denying world leader in the White House.”