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Rick Perry Tells Environmental Protestors That Fossil Fuels Save Lives

Yep, you heard that right.

SCIENCE AF STAFF
3 OCT 2017
 

At a National Petroleum Council meeting in Washington on Monday, Secretary of Energy Rick Perry was interrupted by a group of activists who were protesting his controversial position on climate change.

 

When one protestor yelled out "climate change is killing people", Perry couldn't help but defend the oil industry representatives and executives in the room, including Exxon Mobil and Shell.

"This industry is leading the world in affecting the climate and affecting the climate in a positive way," Perry said, according to Bloomberg.

"I'm proud to be a part of this industry. You want to talk about saving lives, that's what we are doing."

Except, that isn't true. Thanks to climate science, we know that burning fossil fuels is the most "important long-lived 'forcing' of climate change." And ExxonMobil, Shell, BP and Chevron are identified as among the highest emitting investor-owned companies since 1988.

Furthermore, between 2030 and 2050 the catastrophic effects of climate change are predicted to cause approximately 250 000 additional deaths per year from malnutrition, malaria, diarrhoea and heat stress.

Still, Perry claims that the fossil fuel industry is actually saving lives in the developed nations that are most likely to be affected by climate change.

"It upsets me when some guy stands up and says, 'What are you going to do, you're killing people,'" Perry said. 

"No sir. You want to kill people, you take energy away from them and you see how those north African countries will be treated."

Perry's statements were met with applause.

"People's lives are on the line," shouted another protestor.

The activists were removed from the event soon after the outbursts.