Bill Nye appeared on John Oliver’s HBO show “Last Week Tonight” this past Sunday to discuss the fact 42 percent of Americans believe the grave consequences of climate change are being “exaggerated in the news.”
A March Gallup poll found that four in 10 believe that the seriousness of climate change is generally exaggerated by media. That number is is higher than any year before Barrack Obama became president.
“Who gives a shit?” Oliver said of the poll. “You don’t need people’s opinion on a fact. You might as well have a poll asking: ‘Which number is bigger, 15 or 5?’ or ‘Do owls exist?’ or ‘Are there hats?’”
“The debate on climate change,” he said, “should not be whether or not it exists – it’s what we should do about it.”
“The only accurate way to report that one our of four Americans are skeptical of global warming is to say, ‘A poll finds that one out of four Americans are wrong about something.’"
Oliver brought out Nye to debate the matter with a climate change skeptic.
“John, humans are causing climate change, no question,” Nye said.
“Before we begin,” Oliver said, “in the interest of mathematical balance I’m going to bring out two people who agree with you, climate skeptic. And, Bill Nye, I’m also going to bring out 96 other scientists. It’s a little unwieldy, but this is the only way you can actually have a representative discussion.”
When he asked the panel for their opinion on climate change, Oliver was unable to hear skeptics “over the weight of scientific evidence.”
“My thanks to Bill Nye and the overwhelming scientific concensus,” he concluded.