Trump: We Could Use Some Global Warming

The New York Times reports:

With unusually frigid weather gripping much of the Eastern United States this week, President Trump took to Twitter on Thursday to cast doubt on the reality of climate change, but he appeared unaware of the distinction between weather and climate.

Climate refers to how the atmosphere acts over a long period of time, while weather describes what’s happening on a much shorter time scale. The climate can be thought of, in a way, as the sum of long periods of weather.

Or, to use an analogy Mr. Trump might appreciate, weather is how much money you have in your pocket today, whereas climate is your net worth. A billionaire who has forgotten his wallet one day is not poor, anymore than a poor person who lands a windfall of several hundred dollars is suddenly rich. What matters is what happens over the long term.

ABC News reports:

Scientifically, climate change is measured over larger timeframes, not a handful of days, and not in one location. Last year was the hottest year on record, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Currently, 2017 is on track to be the third-warmest year on record, the NOAA says, behind only 2016 and 2015.

The comment on the U.S. paying “trillions of dollars” is apparently a reference to the Paris Agreement, which the U.S. pulled out of in June.

Trump cited the deal as being bad for the U.S. economy in a speech from the Rose Garden. With Syria’s acceptance of the accord in November, the U.S. is now the only U.N. country not to be part of the 2015 agreement to curb greenhouse gas emissions.