TALLAHASSEE — Democratic candidate for governor Charlie Crist fueled the climate wars Friday and called Florida State University oceanography professor Jeff Chanton offering to meet with the scientists who asked to meet with Gov. Rick Scott.
Scott said this week that someone in his administration would meet with the 10 climate scientists from universities and colleges across the state, but after Crist agreed to meet them, the governor also agreed.
"I would be happy to meet with them. We have a great record on the environment and restoration projects in Florida," Scott said in a statement released by his campaign.
The state's top climate experts want to explain the research that shows the impact human-induced global warming is having on Florida.
Chanton delivered their letter to the governor Tuesday asking for the meeting to explain to him the impact human-induced global warming will have on Florida. The letter has prompted media attention for Chanton all week, and on Friday, after Crist's call and the governor's updated answer, he said he was "very pleased."
Crist was governor when climate change policies had become politically popular for Republicans like former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Crist launched a series of aggressive policies aimed at targeting greenhouse gas emissions.
The GOP-controlled Legislature has since dismantled nearly all of those programs with the agreement of Scott, who in 2010 signaled he was in the climate change deniers camp.