GOP congressional witness bizarrely argues that 'being wealthy saves lives'
Caleb Rossiter (image via screengrab)

During a House committee on the health effects of climate change on Tuesday, Republicans tried to bury the overwhelming scientific consensus that rising emissions and global temperatures are a threat to human health by calling Caleb Rossiter, a statistician and noted climate denier, to explain how pumping low-income countries full of fossil fuels is actually a good thing.

"We save the people of the planet from people who think they're saving the planet," said Rossiter. "It's in Africa that fossil fueled electricity is truly a matter of life and death. Only 25 percent of African homes has electricity. That explains why life expectancy in Africa is 20 years lower than the rest of the world."

"Consider this Preston Curve of life expectancy in a country as a function of its wealth," said Rossiter, putting up a slide. "This is one of the strongest cases in public health and social science: being wealthy saves lives."

There are many factors that negatively impact African life expectancy, including lack of clean water and medicine. The idea that higher fossil fuel consumption would automatically solve all these problems is specious, particularly since renewable energy is now generally cheaper than coal-fired power.

Watch below:

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