A recent column about climate change in The Nugget demands a rebuttal. The column expressed a number of “facts” and opinions, only one of which do I fully agree with, and that is that climate science has been politicized.

As proof of how our politics are impacting science, consider that 27% of Republicans express concern about climate change while 83% of Democrats express that same concern (Pew Research Center Poll). This is not the same in the rest of the world. The GOP climate-change platform is the opposite of conservative platforms in the UK, Norway, Sweden, Spain, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and Germany (Platform and Manifesto Study, University of Bergen, Norway).

Consider the following.

Is climate change settled science? Yes. 97.2 percent of climate scientists agree that mankind is responsible for the current, soon-to-be-catastrophic, climate change. (NASA, Berkeley, U.S. National Academy of Sciences).

The past five years are the warmest years in recorded history (NOAA).

The rate of warming in the second half of the 20th century was higher than during any similar period of the past 2,000 years (Columbia University Study).

A one-degree temperature drop caused the “Little Ice Age.” A five-degree drop buried a large part of North America under a towering mass of ice 20,000 years ago (NASA). A four-degree rise will cause unprecedented flooding, heat waves, droughts, storms and rising global sea levels.

Are we giving our youth all of the facts in lower education? Yes. Sadly, under the Trump administration, many federal agencies have deleted information about climate science from their websites. On the plus side, 642 institutions now offer degrees in environmental sustainability (Princeton Review).

The position of the GOP rejects the need to tackle climate change as evidenced by the recent withdrawal from the Paris Agreement. One hundred and ninety-five countries signed and support the Paris Agreement including all of the top-GDP countries, except for the U.S., who have now withdrawn courtesy of Donald Trump. The five countries that get the lowest possible score according to climateaction

tracker.org; United States, Russia, Ukraine, Turkey and Saudi Arabia. That list should concern us for so many reasons.

Since the U.S. departed from the Paris Agreement, China has doubled down. They are making huge investments in new technology and are moving away from fossil fuels. They are the world’s largest investor in solar and wind technology and now have more jobs in solar energy than in coal-mining. China’s strategy is to dominate climate science technologies.

The Trump administration believes that reducing the use of fossil fuels will harm our economy. As is typical of this administration this is unsupported by facts and widely disputed. China is setting out to prove this wrong.

When I was a kid there were three TV stations; NBC, CBS and ABC. Journalists from these stations, for the most part, reported the same facts through trusted anchors like Walter Cronkite. We all subscribed to these same or very similar set of facts thus enabling meaningful debate.

Contrast that to today where most of us subscribe to the “news” outlets that align with at least one of our beliefs, and because of politicization we most often inherit the whole platform of beliefs.

It would be very unusual for MSNBC fans to watch Fox News and vice-versa. If one is a “climate-denier,” there is a likelihood that they would also be anti-immigration, have a low tolerance for LGBTQ rights, etc. Algorithms of social media companies force-feed us content that reinforces our perceived political preferences.

We live in echo-chambers.

The politicization of climate science is one of many issues dividing us as Americans.

Of all the global and domestic issues being debated today, this is the one that we can’t get wrong.

Climate science is not a liberal conspiracy.