Charlie Crist Wants to Meet With Scientists Who Asked to Meet With Rick Scott

In what some would call a wily veteran move, Charlie Crist has publicly offered to meet with the ten Florida environmental scientists who asked Gov. Rick Scott to meet to discuss climate change.

And now that Crist has come out and said he'll meet with the scientists, Scott has also come out and said he'll meet with them.

Ah, politics. It's most likely going to kill us all, but it's fun to watch.

See also: Florida Scientists Want to Chat With Rick Scott About Climate Change

The scientists had written a letter to Scott earlier in the week, requesting a sitdown with the guv "to discuss the current and future impact of human-induced global warming on Florida."

Scott's response was that he'd have someone from his administration meet with the scientists. The letter was signed by ten scientists, which includes professors from the University of Miami, Florida State, and Florida International University.

But according to the Miami Herald, Crist called Florida State University oceanography professor Jeff Chanton on Friday to set up a meeting. And now that he's done that, Scott has suddenly decided that he will personally meet with the scientists now please.

Scott even released a statement on Friday, saying, "I would be happy to meet with them. We have a great record on the environment and restoration projects in Florida."

When it comes to climate change, Scott has had a very wishy-washy and glib "I'm no scientist" stance. His record as governor isn't anything to boast about either, as his administration has basically screwed the state's environment across the board, as GOP leaders are wont to do these days.

Crist, on the other hand, was very enviro-friendly when he was governor, back when it was cool for the GOP to be green.

As governor in 2008, Crist hosted a Climate Change summit. He also appropriated $100 million to continue to restore the Everglades. He made sure manatees were not taken off the endangered species list and kept a coal-fired power plant from being built near the Everglades. Crist was also active in trying to reduce the state's greenhouse gas emissions.

Crist also signed three executive orders to make sure the state was a leader in renewable energy, energy efficiency, and carbon emission reduction. And he fought Big Sugar by trying to negotiate a deal to have the state buy a chunk of the Everglades for restoration.

Scott, meanwhile, assigned an attorney, Herschel Vinyard, to head the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. And, so far, not much good has been done. Regulations have been lax, and the state's environment have been put aside.

That is, until now, after Crist has stepped up and done what Scott should've done days ago.

Send your story tips to the author, Chris Joseph. Follow Chris Joseph on Twitter

KEEP NEW TIMES BROWARD-PALM BEACH FREE... Since we started New Times Broward-Palm Beach, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Chris Joseph
Contact: Chris Joseph