Saturday July 15, 2017

Canadian scientist builds bridges to reach climate change skeptics like Trump

The smoke stacks at American Electric Power's (AEP) Mountaineer coal power plant in New Haven, West Virginia, October 30, 2009.

The smoke stacks at American Electric Power's (AEP) Mountaineer coal power plant in New Haven, West Virginia, October 30, 2009. (SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

Listen 41:23

Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the Paris Accord on climate change left the United States all on its own at the recent G20 meetings. 

In Berlin, every other member of the G20 agreed to move forward on reducing greenhouse gasses, save the US, which refused. This infuriated German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who said she deplored that the U.S. has decided to exit the Accord. 

G20-GERMANY/

German Chancellor Angela Merkel gestures as she talks with U.S. President Donald Trump during a working session at the G20 leaders summit in Hamburg, Germany July 8, 2017. REUTERS/Ludovic Marin/Pool - RTX3ALQ7 (Ludovic Marin/Reuters)

The Trump presidency has made for a jittery scientific community, and an atmosphere of anxiety — even despair — among many who feel climate change is the greatest peril facing civilization.  

Their worries are shared by Katharine Hayhoe, the director of the Climate Science Center and a professor of political science at Texas Tech University. 

Hayhoe is one of the most prominent climate scientists working in the United States today. She is also a Canadian — and an evangelical Christian. Her speciality is talking about climate change with people who are not already convinced of its legitimacy and urgency. 

Katharine Hayhoe

Katharine Hayhoe (Ashley Rodgers/Texas Tech University)

Hayhoe was named one of world's 50 greatest leaders by Fortune magazine earlier this year, and one of Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2014. She's also the host of a PBS online series called "Global Weirding".

In April, Katharine Hayhoe spoke with Michael Enright from Lubbock, Texas. 

Click 'listen' above to hear Michael's interview with Katharine Hayhoe.