Dr. Harold Wanless is Chair of the Department of Geological Sciences at the University of Miami. He has participated in local government panels on climate change, talked to audiences throughout Florida, and has received wide acclaim for his work. In 2010 Dr. Wanless quietly invited Marco Rubio to meet with qualified climate scientists. Rubio promised to respond to a hand-delivered letter, but he never did.
It is one thing to be a retail politician from West Dade, where Rubio first made his mark. It is quite another to be on the list of possible vice presidential candidates. How prepared is Marco Rubio to be one step from the presidency? Judging from his refusal to meet with climate change scientists, not at all.
A recent survey conducted by George Mason University and Yale University, found that 72 percent of those surveyed believe global warming should be a priority for the Obama administration and Congress. In refusing to even meet with climate change scientists, with Rubio it is a long way from "yes we can" to "no we won't."
Sea level rise is running at the high end of projections of the 2001 UN Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change, according to Dr. Wanless. One would think that Senator Rubio, representing the state with the most to lose, would be curious. The difference between the low range and the high range of sea level rise is, roughly speaking, separates severe impacts the mid part of this century and the beginning of the next. Given that the depreciation schedule of private investment and mortgages is on the thirty year scale, alarm bells should be ringing.
Rubio's positions on global warming have shifted with political winds. As a member of the Florida legislature, Rubio acknowledged global warming, but during his Senate campaign in 2010, when his opponent Gov. Charlie Crist demonstrated his belief in global warming, the Tampa Tribune quoted Rubio saying of climate change, "I don't think there's the scientific evidence to justify it."
Since Rubio is under consideration by Mitt Romney to be VP candidate for the GOP slate in November, it is time for Rubio to clear the air. Why won't he meet with climate change scientists? But even if Rubio is not selected, as US senator for Florida, he should be agreeable to meet with climate change scientists. Why is Marco Rubio hiding?