Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson says he hasn’t seen the evidence that climate change is a thing.
To prove him wrong, California Gov. Jerry Brown sent Carson a letter and a flash drive containing the UN’s Synthesis Report on climate change.
Climate change is hard to deny from a scientific standpoint: scientists have tried to replicate climate denying studies without much success, and organizations have even pinned down who the worst greenhouse gas emitters are.
Here’s the letter, which Brown’s press office tweeted out:
— Gov. Brown Press Ofc (@GovPressOffice) September 10, 2015
In the letter, Brown quotes Carson saying:
“I know there are a lot of people who say ‘overwhelming science,’ but then when you ask them to show the overwhelming science, they never can show it… There is no overwhelming science that the things that are going on are man-caused and not naturally caused. Gimme a break.”
Carson had said this in an interview with The San Francisco Chronicle just a couple of days before Brown penned the letter.
Brown’s response to Carson’s missing “overwhelming science” proof? A report from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which Brown writes is an assessment of more than 30,000 scientific papers “written by more than 800 scientists, representing 80 countries.”
He went on to quote the forward to the report, which comes to the conclusion “that human influence on the climate system is clear and growing, with impacts observed across all continents and oceans.”
Brown then asked Carson to review the material, because “climate change is much bigger than partisan politics,” Brown wrote.
The California governor has been a champion of the environment throughout his career, pushing for climate change initiatives during his fourth term as governor like a recent collaboration between California and China to reduce greenhouse emissions by 80-95% by 2050.
Carson first responded to the letter through his campaign communications director Doug Watts, who told CNN that Carson is a “climate questioner” rather than a “climate denier.”
Before Wednesday’s debate, Carson told reporters that the flash drive “doesn’t change [his] opinion.” That opinion being, “as responsible human beings, we should look out for the environment.”