It was important that Gov. Matt Mead attended a forum in Jackson two weeks ago where he knew he would face hard questions about global warming and climate change. He could expect the most engaged Wyoming audience on the subject here, and the one most likely to be critical of his support for fossil fuels. He attended nevertheless, and he reiterated his support of mining and drilling. Those industries fund much of the state’s operations, he reminded Jackson Hole residents, none of whom pay state income tax as a result.
Mead said the world generally accepts the phenomenon of climate change, yet he doesn’t. The governor is a climate-change denier. A recent white paper by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said it is virtually certain the planet is warming, and human influence is clear. “Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, and since the 1950s, many of the observed changes are unprecedented over decades to millennia,” the paper said. “The atmosphere and ocean have warmed, the amounts of snow and ice have diminished, sea level has risen, and the concentrations of greenhouse gases have increased.”