Are Florida Officials Not Allowed To Use The Terms 'Climate Change' And 'Global Warming'?

| by Ethan Brown
The Earth.The Earth.

A new report from the Florida Center for Investigative Reporting says employees at the state’s environmental agency were warned not to use the terms “climate change” and “global warming” in official documents and presentations.

The report states the ban began in 2011, when Gov. Rick Scott took office. While current and former employees were led to believe the ban was just about word choice, others say differently. 

Kristina Trotta is a former employee with Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection. She told investigators that the terms were not allowed to be used, saying, “We were told that we were not allowed to discuss anything that was not a true fact.”

The Republican governor has previously voiced skepticism on climate change, “which is that greenhouse gas emissions from human activities like burning fossil fuels causes the earth to warm.”

Just last year, Scott told reporters he was “not a scientist” when he was pressed on his beliefs in the controversial issue.

The report also suggests that “conservative” lawmakers do not believe in global warming and refuse to pass legislation that attempts to combat it. But a recent study found 56 percent of Republicans want to see carbon emission regulated by the federal government. Also, Republicans have recently voted along with Democrats in saying that “climate change is real and not a hoax.”

Recently, Sen. Jim Inhofe made headlines by bringing a snowball onto the Senate floor as proof that global warming isn't real. However, Jim Inhofe failed to note that 2014 was the hottest year on record and that all of the 10 hottest years on record have come after 1998. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) also notes on its website that one indicator of climate change is "more extreme climate events." 

As 97% of scientists conclude that humans play a role in global warming, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse quipped that you can either believe "every major American scientific society" or you can believe "the senator with the snowball."

Sources: Express, WYFF4.com, Florida Center for Investigative Reporting, The Hill, ForbesHuffington Post, TIME, EPA, Scientific American, The Hill (2)

Photo Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/Flickr