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Forum talks climate solutions, inspired and in spite of Gov. Scott


About 250 people turned out Monday afternoon for a conference on climate change inspired by Gov. Rick Scott to talk about solutions ranging from alternate energy sources to coping with sea-level rise.

The Florida Climate Science and Solutions Summit, held at Eckerd College, brought together scientists, government officials and entrepreneurs to discuss what’s worked and what has not as the atmosphere and oceans heat up.

Three of the four climate scientists who were on the first panel of the conference were part of a group that met with the governor in August to talk to him about climate change. When Scott took office in 2011 he was openly skeptical about climate change, but while seeking re-election he has replied to questions about his position by saying, “I’m not a scientist.”

When the climate scientists met with Scott, he did not commit to any change in his stance, but said he was more interested in solutions than anything else. That prompted Susan Glickman of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy to work with Eckerd officials in setting up the conference.

At one point, moderator Rob Lorei of WMNF-FM asked the scientists if they’re part of a vast conspiracy to promote an unproven theory just to rake in big-dollar government grants. Ben Kirtman of the University of Miami said, “Shoot, we can barely agree on anything.” More from Craig Pittman here.