U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke claimed Sunday that climate change has “nothing to do” with global warming, despite overwhelming scientific evidence to the contrary, according to a Monday report from The Guardian. Zinke made these comments, in which he instead blamed environmentalists and strict logging limits, to a TV station in Northern California, a region that is currently suffering a disastrous, deadly wildfire season. “America is better than letting these radical groups control the dialogue about climate change,” he said, reiterating his belief that logging and active forest management is the real key to preventing wildfires. Zinke’s comments echo the position he advanced in a USA Today op-ed last Wednesday, in which he argued that “while many of the frivolous lawsuits waged to stop timber harvests cite habitat as a concern, environmental litigants are little concerned when an entire forest burns to the ground and the habitat and wildlife are lost.” President Trump expressed a similar view on Twitter two days before Zinke’s op-ed, pinning the blame on “bad environmental laws which aren’t allowing massive amounts of readily available water to be properly utilized” but neglecting to mention climate change.
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