Watch Bill Nye blast CNN on air for pitting him against climate change skeptic.

Watch Bill Nye Blast CNN On Air for Pitting Him Against Climate Change Skeptic

Watch Bill Nye Blast CNN On Air for Pitting Him Against Climate Change Skeptic

The Slatest
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April 22 2017 5:26 PM

Watch Bill Nye Blast CNN On Air for Pitting Him Against Climate Change Skeptic

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Bill Nye "The Science Guy" gestures as people gather at the March for Science on April 22, 2017 in Washington, D.C.

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images

“Science Guy” Bill Nye was none too happy that CNN put him on the same panel as a climate change skeptic on Earth Day. "I will say, much as I love the CNN, you’re doing a disservice by having one climate change skeptic, and not 97 or 98 scientists or engineers concerned about climate change,” Nye said during an appearance on CNN's New Day Saturday to discuss the March for Science that was taking place in more than 100 cities across the world.

During the segment, William Happer, a physicist and climate change skeptic, argued that the Earth is getting greener and that carbon dioxide is good for the atmosphere. “There’s this myth that’s developed around carbon dioxide that it’s a pollutant, but you and I both exhale carbon dioxide with every breath. Each of us emits about two pounds of carbon dioxide a day, so are we polluting the planet?” Happer said. “Carbon dioxide is a perfectly natural gas, it’s just like water vapor, it’s something that plants love. They grow better with more carbon dioxide, and you can see the greening of the earth already from the additional carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.”

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An obviously exasperated Nye responded: “What he claims to not understand is the rate. it’s the speed at which we’re adding carbon dioxide.” He latter accused Happer of “cherry picking a certain model” and that the consensus view on climate change “is not controversial in mainstream science.” Plus, Nye added, acting like climate change doesn’t exist is bad for the economy. “If you pretend that climate change isn't a real problem, you will fall behind other countries that do invest in science—that do invest in basic research," Nye said.

Happer, who has met with Trump and has been described as the man who may take over the role as top science adviser, later appeared to shock everyone when he compared the Paris Agreement on climate change with the Munich Agreement and Nazi appeasement. “It’s definitely appeasement,” Hopper said. “It’s an appropriate comparison because it was a treaty that was not going to do any good.”

Nye later spoke to a crowd at a rally in Washington, D.C. before the March for Science started. "Today we have a great many lawmakers—not just here but around the world— deliberately ignoring and actively suppressing science," Nye said. "Their inclination is misguided and in no one's best interest. Our lives are in every way improved by having clean water, reliable electricity and access to electronic global information."

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the Today’s Papers column from 2006 to 2009. Follow him on Twitter.