Unqualified politicians do not have expertise on climate change

Many climate change-denying politicians have one thing in common: they are not scientists. These politicians—especially those in the Republican Party—often misuse scientific evidence or disregard expert opinion altogether when offering their stance on global warming.

Sen. Ted Cruz made many incorrect statements regarding climate change while in New Hampshire in January and Donald Trump has stated he is “not a believer” in global warming and believes the world faces bigger issues. Now, it’s former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin who will give her “expert” opinion on the denial of climate change in an upcoming panel discussion.

Palin will participate in a discussion on Thursday April 14 following a screening of the climate change-denying documentary Climate Hustle in Washington, D.C. The documentary aims to debunk global warming, and Palin said, "We've been told by fearmongers that global warming is due to man's activities and this [documentary] presents strong arguments against that in a very relatable way."

We understand that politicians may deny climate change because they often have financial stakes in major corporations that cause environmental harm. But why do we insist on using these influential people as sources for this conversation when they lack credible science knowledge and experience?

The phrase, “I'm not a scientist, but ... ” in regards to climate change conversations has nearly become an ongoing joke. It seems that anyone who asserts their support or opposition to the debate can be considered an expert on the subject regardless of their lack of professional knowledge. Palin said in a video posted on her abandoned YouTube channel that no one has proven that these changes are manmade or that it is the result of greenhouse gases, which directly contradicts scientific research.

Climate change is a big issue politicians need to address immediately—whether they want to reconcile it or deny that it even exists. But politicians should not be consulted on the issue as if they have real experience and knowledge in researching the subject; that's what the scientists are for. And since the consensus among real scientists is that climate change and global warming exist and are manmade, it's tiring that so many influential people are working too hard to argue against it.