At a ceremony honoring the rebuilding of a Lavallette, N.J. boardwalk on Monday, Governor Chris Christie said that climate change was definitely not a contributing factor to Superstorm Sandy.
“I don’t think there’s been any proof thus far that Sandy was caused by climate change," Christie said. "But I would absolutely expect that that’s exactly what WNYC would say, because you know liberal public radio always has an agenda.”
Christie’s comments are quite interesting, considering that until just recently he was a seemingly pro-environment Republican. During the campaign for his first term, environmental groups like the New Jersey Environmental Federation endorsed him. In 2011, he agreed that “human activity plays a role” in environmental changes, and later said that to disagree with 90 percent of the world’s environmental experts who agree that climate change is occurring would be foolish.
During a visit to Moorestown, GA on Monday, Tea Party members even protested outside the Moorestown Community House to draw attention away from Christie in favor of another, more conservative candidate.
In addition to the governor’s comments this week, a WNYC report revealed that New Jersey’s transit system was grossly underprepared for Sandy, especially compared to New York City. New Jersey Transit’s executive director, James Weinstein, confessed that he had never read the climate change report, and never considered storing the trains safely away during a storm. Because of NJ Transit’s carelessness, a quarter of its fleet was lost to the storm.
The WNYC also reported that Christie shut down the state’s Office of Climate Change, contrary to his previous statements. When WNYC asked him if he was discussing the severity of storms with climate change scientists, Christie said: “No, that’s over my head.”