Return to Transcripts main page

CNN Live Event/Special

Climate Crisis Town Hall With Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Presidential Candidate. Aired 7-7:40p ET

Aired September 04, 2019 - 07:00   ET


[19:00:00] ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: And welcome back to CNN's Climate Crisis Town Hall. I'm Erin Burnett. The top democratic presidential candidates are all with us tonight on the heels of the deadly Hurricane Dorian, which is leaving neighborhoods underwater in the Bahamas, utter devastation.

It now heads north along the United States coast. For the latest on Dorian, let's go now to the CNN weather center to our meteorologist, Jennifer Gray. Jennifer?

JENNIFER GRAY, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Hi Erin. That's right. This storm actually strengthened just a little bit in the 5 o'clock advisory, now just shy of a Category 3. Still a Category 2, 110 mile per hour winds, gust of 130. It has been paralleling the Florida coast throughout the last couple of days moving to the north, northwest at 8 miles per hour.

It's currently about 150 miles south of Charleston, and that's going to be one of the main areas we're going to watch over the next day or so as conditions continue to deteriorate there, all along the Georgia coast, South Carolina coast; Charleston could see a big push of water as we go through the day tomorrow with that storm surge.

And then as it races off the North Carolina coast, possible land fall somewhere in the Carolinas, we'll keep you posted.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Jennifer. And you know the storm comes as we are facing a catastrophe of unprecedented proportions. You know Hurricane Dorian is just one. Right? One thing, right, one sign of that dangerous world that scientist say we are entering if humans do not cut carbon pollution and cut it quickly, in half they say, over the next l1 years to net zero by 2050.

Seven candidates are still standing by to answer voter's questions about the crisis including Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren.

Please welcome now, Minnesota senator, Amy Klobuchar.


Senator, good to see you. Thank you so much.

(APPLAUSE) SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR (D-MN), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Thank you (ph) everyone. Wow. This is fun (ph). Woman anchor, woman presidential candidate. We've arrived. This is all good and what a great crowd. Thank you.

BURNETT: So Senator Klobuchar, it's great to have you with us.

I mean when you think about the climate situation, how big of a crisis is it?

KLOBUCHAR: It is a monumental crisis, and I think what we have to dispel is this idea that it's happening 100 years from now. It's happening right now. And it is happening, as you heard that weather report about the hurricane, which we know was a level five hurricane when it hit the Bahamas in a way that we've never seen before on those islands. We've seen the rising sea levels, we've seen that melting Greenland ice sheet.

In Minnesota, two of my good friends who are Arctic explorers; Anne Bancroft (ph) and Will Steiger (ph); they have reported to me what they've seen in the Arctic.

But it's important to bring it home when we talk about this. And by home I mean, for me, to the middle of the country because it's also -- if we're going to do something about this, we need to make the case of what's happening right now.

We see it economically with homeowners insurance up 50 percent in just the last few years. It's going to cost us like $500 billion every year. So we need to make that economic case.

But in the Midwest -- and that's where we've not gotten as many votes for moving on this, what do we see? Fires. We saw those firefighters lost in Arizona. We saw raging fires in Colorado.

We saw the California video, in northern California of that dad driving his little girl over those lapping flames with their neighborhood burning behind them.

And in Iowa, a woman named Fran (ph) who showed me her binoculars and she says, here look, she says this is my house. I bought it with my husband. We lived there with our four year olds. I wanted to retire in this house. I love it. I love the way the light comes in the kitchen, but I don't know if I'm ever going to sit in it again.

I said well, where is the river, because the house was half submerged in water. She said well it stood here for nearly a century, this house. And I said is this the river. She says no. The river is two and half miles away. It has never come this close to our neighborhood before.


That's climate change, that's the crisis that's happening right now -- and that's the case we need to make to the American people, as well as the opportunities that we're going to have for new jobs, and new technologies and take this on as a mission for our country -- just like the greatest generation won World War II and just like the Civil Rights movement, this is our challenge.

BURNETT: You -- I just -- because you mentioned World War II, which I know is central to your question, Stephanie Doba has a question. Retired, now volunteers with the Sierra Club's Beyond Coal Campaign in New York State, Senator. Stephanie go ahead with your question.

KLOBUCHAR: Thank you (ph).

STEPHANIE DOBA, VOLUNTEER, SIERRA CLUB'S BEYOND COAL CAMPAIGN: Thank you Senator. I recently visited a museum devoted to the home front during World War II, it was very inspiring.

In just a few years America achieved a massive industrial mobilization that was key to the allies winning the war. It gave me hope that we could do the same thing now, but instead of building tanks, ships and planes -- we need to rapidly build a new, clean energy infrastructure.

What will you do to make this mobilization happen, and how will you persuade the American public to get onboard?

KLOBUCHAR: That's a great question, and the president has a unique role here. And right now, I think you all know we have a guy in the White House that's pretending this isn't happening.

And in fact, when I announced my candidacy in the middle of a blizzard in Minnesota with four inches of snow on my head, I talked about climate change immediately and he actually tweeted out making fun of me for doing that and called me snow woman

So I wrote back, Donald Trump, the science is on my side when it comes to climate change and I'd like to see how your hair would fair in a blizzard.

So what do we need to do? Well let me tell you, in my first 100 days -- and you can see this on my website at I put out a plan, because I think just like, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, when you talk about the past, did with his first 100 days we have to change the tone and we have to do things that actually we can do without Congress, OK? Legally -- legally.

And there are a number of things we can do. On day one I will bring us back in to that international climate change agreement.

On day two, bring back the clean power rules that President Obama had worked on for so many years -- you can do that without Congress.

On day three, bring back the gas mileage standards which we know the car companies in the U.S. are ready to meet anyway.

On day four, five and six I will work on sweeping legislation with the mayors and with Congress and get that introduced.

And on day seven you're supposed to rest, but I don't think I will. So that is -- that's the first seven days, and from there you make this a top priority to get this passed, and then individual efforts like Governor Inslee talks about so well. Things like even using cold water for your clothes saves five times the amount of energy, and you don't drink your clothes, right? The light bulbs -- you name it.

So people, when you have a president that takes this on as a mission, you have to do the big things and transfer and get out of fossil fuels, and move to clean energy. But you also have to talk the talk to make this a mission, so people also do the little things.

BURNETT: So Senator, Bernie Sanders -- Senator Sanders says that this is going to cost a lot so his plan -- he has put a price tag on it of $16 trillion.

Now, I know in your plan you haven't put an overall price tag, but you have talked about infrastructure improvements, things like that. You've said that would be about $1 trillion.

So, I mean, are these all just make up numbers? Is $16 trillion too much? Is that right? I mean, for context just so everyone knows our economy is $20 trillion, so $16 trillion is redoing the whole thing -- is that right?

KLOBUCHAR: I do have a price on my plan. So what I would do -- and I think this is similar to a number of other -- the candidates have suggested in this range is first of all putting a price on carbon, which is really, really important, and you can do this with cap on trade (ph) something we tried and got very close to getting it done.

You can do it with simply a carbon tax, or you can do it with a combination with the renewable electricity standard. I'd want to see who we have in Congress and how far we can move.

So that alone will bring in trillions of dollars. And some of that can be used, of course to help communities that are going to be affected by this, and by the transition and make sure people have jobs coming out of this.

I'm someone -- my grandpa was an iron ore miner, and I saw what happens when the mines close down and things change -- you have to make sure -- this is something very close to my heart, that you have the funding so that people will be employed.

Then the other part about it is environmental justice, right? And making sure that the communities that's (ph) most affected get the help that they need. And then of course the science, research, development -- all the investment we have to do.

So once you do something with a carbon tax, once you repeal parts of that Republican tax bill that were so regressive with hundreds of billions of dollars going to corporations and going overseas. Using some of that money for infrastructure, which I proposed right off the top, so you get the funding you need to be -- for me, the $2 trillion to $3 trillion range, part of it is with matching funds.

I want to be honest of what I think we can bring in.


BURNETT: And you have been very direct, which one of -- one of the things that people -- people like, right? You've been specific.

KLOBUCHAR: Yes. And blunt.

BURNETT: But $2 trillion, I mean -- right, which -- which you are, but I mean, so that's why -- Senator Sanders says $16 trillion. That sounds like that's way above where --


KLOBUCHAR: You will have to ask him about this. I only know how I'm going to get the funding, and I think you've got to be honest with people about how you're going to get the money and what you're going to spend it on, or it's going to be really hard to bring along those people that we need to win in the middle of the country.

We have to win the Senate. If you really want to move this, we need a different majority leader than Mitch McConnell, who's (ph) been stopping it from the beginning.

BURNETT: I want to go to Liza Cohen. She's from Philadelphia and you're also a student, of course, at Fordham University, majoring in communications in the environment.

KLOBUCHAR: Very good (ph).

BURNETT: She currently supports Senator Sanders, so go ahead with your question, Liza.

KLOBUCHAR: Thank you.

LIZA COHEN, STUDENT, FORDHAM UNIVERSITY: You answered a Washington Post questionnaire on fracking by saying that you don't want to ban the method of extracting oil and gas but would like to regulate it better. You said that safe nuclear power along with cleaner coal technologies should continue to be developed.

What defines safe nuclear power and clean coal? Don't they sound like oxymorons?

KLOBUCHAR: OK. That's a great question. And I want to be clear. My plan is definite that we have to go to carbon neutral by no later than 2050.

I'm a cosponsor of the Green New Deal, so I'd like to see it even sooner, right? But at the outset, when I look at the numbers, I think we should at least get this done -- we have to by 2050. And we have to limit this to 2.7 degrees warming Fahrenheit or we're going to be in a whole lot more trouble than we are already are in today.

So when it comes to those technologies, I think storage is an issue. I know Senator Harris was just talking about this with nuclear. But I would look at all the plants we have right now. It is about 20 percent of our energy and as you know, it doesn't emit carbon.

So I would look at those plants and make sure they're safe and figure out what upgrades we have to make to the plants, but I wouldn't expand nuclear unless we can find safe storage and figure this out. And Yucca Mountain is not the answer.

The second piece about this, you asked about coal. No, I wouldn't allow for building of new coal plants. What we're talking about here as we phase out these coal plants is how we can -- while they're still existing, how we can make them better for the environment.

And one other thing that wasn't noted is natural gas of course is a transitional fuel right now. And one of the things, among many, that the Trump administration has done that is so bad for our environment that I would reverse is their changes to the methane rules and methane emission. That is very dangerous to our environment.

BURNETT: So you and scientists have said -- you know, they've talked about the -- the -- the urgency with which people need to act. They've said we need to end the fossil fuel era as soon as possible, right, or we're going to have these -- these -- these effects that cannot be reversed, OK?

In a recent interview you said it doesn't make sense -- I just want to quote you, to quote, get rid of all these industries or do this in a few years. Are the scientists wrong? I mean, are you going to get rid of them in 11 years? Talk -- talk about the timing here.

KLOBUCHAR: Right. So the timing is to make this our mission, like landing on the moon, or the Civil Rights movement where our country came together and said we're going to solve something. And when do you that, you get the new technology and the new results.

So what I think we need to do -- I was being honest, I don't think we can phase it out in a few years. To me that's like two or three or four years. Right? You have to do it over a period of time, you have to be aware of where people are working and how are you going to do this in a way that keeps our economy going and keeps our economy strong.

So that's how I think about it. But right now we have a leader that doesn't even think at all in the long term. And there is an old Ojibway saying that -- is important to me -- we have a lot of tribes in our state -- and it says great leaders should make decisions not for this generation but for seven generations from now. We have --


KLOBUCHAR: -- we -- we have a president that can't make decisions seven minutes from now, OK? So a lot of this is looking, as you say, Erin, and adjusting. If we can put that money into R&D and work with the private sector, which is a big part of what I think we need to do going forward, if we can get that technology going, perfect the storage for energy, the sooner we can do this, the better. And --

BURNETT: Let's go now to -- KLOBUCHAR: Go ahead.


BURNETT: -- David Shimoni -- sorry (ph) -- a musician right here in New York City. David, go ahead with your question for the senator.

DAVID SHIMONI, MUSICIAN: Thank you. Do you support a jobs guarantee as part of a climate plan or do you think we risk losing support for a climate plan by mixing the issues of climate change and full employment?


KLOBUCHAR: OK. So I think that we have to make jobs and employment a major part of this.

First of all, let's look at the facts even in today's economy that wind and solar are some of the growing areas for new jobs. All right?

Let's look at the fact in today's economy 99 percent of the wind is going to be rural. It is right now, and we have a lot of issues not just with urban poverty but with rural.

So there's a lot of exciting things that can happen in rural America out of this. So there's a lot of new jobs.

So for me, and I touched on this before, is that you've got to make sure these areas as you are transitioning out of coal, as you are replacing this oil with electric cars and other new technology that you make sure that people that are working in those fossil fuel industries have jobs.

And under my plan, which is somewhat unique compared to the other ones -- and I appreciate the strong support for my plan from the League of Conservations Voters in the statement they made yesterday, you can have incentives for investment in these areas that isn't just about green energy jobs. Right?

It can be about different kinds of manufacturing jobs. But the key is forever etched in my mind is when Duluth, Minnesota and Northern Minnesota, where my family is from on my dad's side; they had such hard times during one period of time that literally they put up a billboard that said the last ones who leave town turn off the lights.

OK? That's how bad it was. But they came back. They came back because of investment in new businesses, because of tourism and they figured out Lake Superior, what were their attributes and they came back. Northern Minnesota, iron ore mines. And by the way, for some of these car batteries we're going to need some of this iron ore and steel to build the grid and things like that. They came back as well when went after steel dumping.

So I've seen these changes but what (ph) we do worker training, we've got to make sure it's not just kids, that we're ready to train adults as well, and that we're ready to make sure we find jobs that are suiting the skills that they've had that they've built over the years.

BURNETT: All right. We are going to take a brief break, Senator. And we'll be back on the other side with much more from Senator Amy Klobuchar. And of course, next up Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders.

KLOBUCHAR: All right. Thank you.



BURNETT: And welcome back. Former Vice President Joe Biden is going to be joining us in a few moments to answer your questions about the climate crisis.

First though, more with Senator Amy Klobuchar answering your questions. And Senator, let's get straight to another question from the audience.


BURNETT: Ari Papahronis is a student at Columbia University. He has lobbying Congress for the Green New Deal. You're a member of, I know, of the Sunrise Movement. Go ahead with your question, Ari.

KLOBUCHAR: Thanks, Ari. Like your shirt.

ARI PAPAHRONIS: Good evening. Thank you. Thank you. The Amazon Rainforest is currently burning after being cleared for the cattle and dairy industry to expand. And livestock being grown irresponsibly has caused an accumulation of CO2 in the atmosphere.

As a senator from Minnesota, an agricultural state that produces large amounts of cheese and beef, how can young climate change activists, like myself, trust you to take on the beef and dairy industries that have so much influence in our government?

KLOBUCHAR: OK. Well let's go back a little to the Amazon, which I think we all know is just a tragedy what's going on there. And being part of the international climate change agreement again, being about to have some clout and leverage with our allies will make a big difference in trying to put pressure and working with nonprofits and other groups all over the world to try to stop this.

Because we're at a point between the fires and some of the decisions for deforestation that it's very, very dangerous to our climate. And I think it just shows how everything is interrelated. There's a reason that we have subsistence (ph) farmer in Sub-Saharan Africa that are now migrating up as refugees. And this is all is one big ecosystem that we have to deal with.

So that's the first thing. I am hopeful that we're going to be able to do this in a way -- especially when I am president that we can continue to have hamburgers and cheese. But at the same time, understand that there are many people that choose to eat vegan and that is great too. But let me tell you a little bit about a different perspective on our

farmers and what we can do to make them part of the solution, because I have seen in rural America many incredible farmers. And ones that are struggling right now to keep going.

And my solution here -- and we've done some of it with the Farm Bill, and the only candidate up here that has been on the Agriculture Committee -- and I've done that for over a decade, been through three Farm Bills.

And first of all, the conservation programs. And we've done some good things. We have to do more, and that is everything -- they're called CRP, CSP, and EQIP. You don't want to know what they stand for but they're good for conservation.

The thing that we are doing now, which is really exciting for climate is by putting incentives out there for farmers to -- for their land to do things that will reduce CO2 in the atmosphere. That's things like planting winter cover crops, and it's a pilot program right now.

And as president I would expand it greatly. I think we all know planting trees is a really good thing. And no one can make fun of that because we know the difference that it can make for a minimum amount of money, not just in the U.S. but across the country.

And I would do more and more with the tools that we have with our farm bill to work with our farmers, including farming methods that require less water, figuring out how we can do this in a way that's best for the environment but yet still being able to produce our own food supply so we are not dependent on other countries that may not have the same environmental standards that we do.

BURNETT: Senator, you know it's interesting -- Andrew Yang mentioned earlier a recent U.N. study. It said basically if everybody stopped eating red meat or went vegan this problem would go away. Now, obviously that's not where we're going. Right. I mean the point wasn't that that's going to immediately happen.

But to this question about the importance of the beef industry and the cow industry, Senator Harris just said she supports adjusting dietary guidelines, changing what we tell Americans they should eat and doing so formally. Would you do that?

KLOBUCHAR: I would do what the science tells us. And I think we all know there's an issue with obesity in this country, we have to do more -- I've been a huge supporter of putting calories on the menus, and -- so people can be empowered to make decisions on their own.


And I think we have to make sure -- and this administration has just defied science every step of the way -- this president does, and we have to make sure we look at science and we make sure we do everything that's healthy, not just for individual Americans but also for our environment.

BURNETT: So on the dietary guidelines issue though, would you adjust them for their environmental impact?

KLOBUCHAR: Oh, I think you can look at doing that of course. But again, I'm very hopeful as I look at all these big things we can do -- we haven't talked about buildings, right? The changes we can make to new buildings -- energy storage, appliance standards -- what I call building a fridge to the next century.

I did that to embarrass my daughter, because it's like -- really, she's out there and it's a bad mom joke, but these basic things we can do with transportation and transit.

So I just want to make clear as we look at this we have to move forward together as a county. We have to find these things that unite us and see this as our mission, and right now people are seeing this climate change right in front of us and we have to seize on this moment. Because that movie, "The Day After Tomorrow," it's today -- it's happening today.

BURNETT: Let's go to our Chief Climate Correspondent Bill Weir again with his question, Bill. Hey Bill (ph).

WEIR: Great fridge pun, Senator.

KLOBUCHAR: Oh thank you --

WEIR: -- sort of (ph) humor.

KLOBUCHAR: I'm glad you liked it.

WEIR: I'm lucky enough that CNN occasionally sends me around the world to check on some of the last amazing creatures left in the world, from the lemurs of Madagascar to the adorable little kiwi down in New Zealand, to black rhinos in Namibia.

KLOBUCHAR: They're beautiful (ph).

WEIR: I know as Senator, you were in favor of taking the gray wolf off of the endangered species list. So how would you as president deal with the question of what creatures to save --


WEIR: Which to protect, all in the interest of biodiversity which affects all of us?

KLOBUCHAR: Let me make very clear, I am strongly in favor of the Endangered Species Act. I have always supported the Endangered Species Act, and I would do anything to reverse some of the suggestions that the president has made recently to repeal it or to water it down.

The wolf in Minnesota, what you are referring to is a situation where they actually made the numbers in a big way to get off the endangered species list.

And we have tried -- and it's still happening during the Obama administration -- President Obama's administration supported getting the wolves off of the list and there kept being problems with management planned, and there kept being legal challenges to that and now it is being attempted again.

And so I simply think, unless you follow the rules, and the Wildlife Federation supports me on this, if you follow the rules -- once you've reached -- you're over the amount -- number of animals then you should allow them to be delisted, otherwise it doesn't really make sense.

So that's where we are on that right now, and we'll see what happens if this time the plan will make it through the courts and obviously if they go below the levels they should be delisted.

BURNETT: I want to go to a video submission now, Senator.


BURNETT: Paul Kazyak is from Westminster, Maryland -- he is a former aquatic scientist from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, now a lecturer at Johns Hopkins University, here's his question.

PAUL KAZYAK, FORMER AQUATIC SCIENTIST, MARYLAND DEPT. OF NATURAL RESOURCES: Our least expensive, fastest way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is to simply use less energy in our daily lives. Yet, in spite of how simple this solution is our energy waste is so large you can literally see it from space.

Given the now very apparent effects of climate change and the prospect for far worse conditions in the future, what plans do you have for getting U.S. citizens and businesses to own their piece of the mess and change their behavior?

KLOBUCHAR: OK, that's a great, great question, because actually Secretary Chu -- the Former Energy Secrtary, when we had Energy Secretaries that wanted to work on this, he always referred to energy efficiency as a low-hanging fruit, right? And we've actually found some bipartisan support for energy efficiency.

So I would start with some of the things that I talked about earlier -- buildings and when we have new buildings going up -- remember those buildings are just even like a car that you get and can replace -- those buildings stand for decades, and decades, and decades.

So putting really strict building standards in place to make these buildings as energy efficient as possible to reduce our carbon. Transportation when it comes to energy efficiency -- this is about finding cars and trucks -- moving to electric cars and trucks. And to do that of course, we need the grid and that's why my infrastructure plan is so focused on green infrastructure.

We need to have the grid, and we need to have storage. Looking at one size doesn't fit all, I'll use some examples of some small electric co-ops that I have visited in my state. SO they have these big farm houses, right? So what they say is, OK if you buy a solar panel -- because we know you might not buy one right away, but if you buy one they have them right outside their co-op. [19:30:00]

If you buy one, then we're going to give you a free, big water heater. Why is that? Because the big water heaters for farm houses actually work the best, because you can store the water and you can use it at different times.

There are just numerous examples of what we can be doing to make energy efficiency, which I agree is this low-hanging fruit. You know why it's popular with the public? Whether it's increasing the gas mileage standards and then eventually moving to electric cars, or the building standards, or the appliance standards -- it's popular because if people save money they really like it.

And one of the ways we found talking to people who are in the electricity business -- small, little co-ops is what really worked to get people to get their energy uses down and look at turning the lights off is (ph) not necessarily the total -- when they saw what their neighbor did (ph) -- they're real competitive.

Now, they don't see the names of their neighbor, but they see what the averages are and they think, well I can do better than this, or I can use less water if I do this. So creating those incentives for people.

And then of course the ultimate way to push these energy efficiency ideas is by pricing carbon and doing something big like that which is part of the sweeping legislation I suggested earlier.

BURNETT: So when we look at the sea level changes, right, we've all seen it. It says well if things continue, right, you're going to be looking at Miami, you're going to be looking at a lot of changes in the coastline of this country -- do you think people will have to literally move inland? That that is part of the solution, that people are going to need to move?

KLOBUCHAR: Well I have been through this mitigation issue from flooding in my own state, and we have actually made sure that some of the people moved their homes. Sometimes we find a way to move their homes, to move them off of flooding areas that keep consistently flooding. Because otherwise they're paying too much money.

I still remember being in Austin, Minnesota and seeing this one house and they'd converted most to a park, they've most of the houses and they go, that's the guy -- that's the guy that wouldn't move last time. And so this is called flood mitigation.

There will be some moving, I'm hopeful it won't be in the whole scale (ph) that we -- could happen if we didn't do anything about this. So if we just sit the way we are, we see what's happening. We know that 8 of the 10 metro areas in the country that's going to experience the most flooding is in Florida, the big metro.

That's why my first climate change event that I did was in Tampa, because I wanted to make that point -- and the point that this isn't just about certain big cities in the country, it's really for our whole country. And so what you've got to do is start acting now, take this as a

mission -- make sure you're appealing to people so they understand they can be a part of this solution and not just portray everything in a negative. Because I actually think there's some real positives that come out of this.

There will be some flood mitigation and our infrastructure going to have to do, some is to reduce carbon like more transit, but some of it is also of course going to be about mitigation, and moving things and making it easier and building stronger levies.

We have to be honest about that or we're not going to be able to make it through this.

BURNETT: Now, you talk about Florida -- there are other communities of course that will be impacted as well, and I know Naomi Hollard from New York City, Environmental Activist and Sunrise Movement Training Fellow (ph) has a question about some of those other communities.

KLOBUCHAR: OK, great -- thank you.

NAOMI HOLLARD, ENVIRONMENTAL ACTIVIST: Thank you. Yeah, I'm a 21 year old woman of color, and I am worried about the impacts of climate change on minority communities. Climate change disproportionately impacts people of color due to massive wealth gaps between white people and people of color.

So when fires happen they can't move as easily, and when heat waves hit they often lack AC to cool off causing heat strokes.

So how do you plan to help communities of colors, in times of climate change fueled disasters?

KLOBUCHAR: Thank you, that is a key question, because we need environmental justice in this country, right? Because when you look at it -- and you're exactly right. Even think of just what happened, people with money what do they do when a flood may be coming their way or a hurricane coming their way? It's much easier, they get in a plane, they go someplace. They put their family in the car, and they drive off to another community -- some friends or neighbors that have room in their house for them to stay in.

People who are economically disadvantaged, and people of color -- many times they're the ones left behind, and when those houses get ruined -- and you can see it in the Bahamas right now, when those houses go down, it's often the houses of those that can afford it the least.

My husband grew up in a trailer home, so I know firsthand those trailer courts and what happens when they get ruined. We certainly saw that in the fire in Paradise, right?

So a lot of this is going to have to be investing in those communities -- when we look at this fund that we're going to build -- a big, big fund from the carbon pricing, then we have to make sure that money's going to help the workers who are transitioning to new jobs, number one. And number two, making sure that people are basically held harmless

(ph) when they see any effects for people that can't afford it. You could put the money at $150,000 in income or less and making sure that they are helped as we look at this transition period.


And then finally -- and that includes, of course, many of our communities of color and investment; increasing the minimum wage. A whole host of number of things that we're going to have to do outside of the climate change area, because we've got to make this work for everyone because right now, it isn't. OK?


BURNETT: Senator, you have not joined some of your colleagues who are calling for an all out ban on fracking. Why?

KLOBUCHAR: OK. So because again, I see natural gas as a transitional fuel. It is better than oil, but it's not nearly as good as wind and solar, right.

However, you have situations where you have dangerous fracking that shouldn't be happening. So as president in my first 100 days, I will review every fracking permit there is and decide which ones should be allowed to be continued and which ones are too dangerous.

Then you go from there. And as you put a -- a price on carbon, you will see less of this going on. Of course you will because once you put rules of the road in place, it's going to become less economically feasible for that kind of fuel.

So the reason I'm saying it in that way, is again, I think I'm being honest about what we need to do to get to where we are.

I remember only a few years ago we were celebrating work of the Obama administration for natural gas fueled buses in one of my communities. Why? It was better than the old kind of buses.

So you have to see this as a transition as we move ahead to a better and cleaner environment.

BURNETT: So when -- when Julian Castro says it was a transitional fuel and it's not that we've become too reliant on it; you believe that it still is transitional?

KLOBUCHAR: I think it will still exist for a while, and I think the key thing is as it exist and as we make it more economic for our renewable and for wind and solar and the kind of technology that we're going to see and the electric cars, that we won't immediately get rid of it.

And I just want -- just being honest with people. But I think that we will reduce it and that we have to also get rid of it where it is very dangerous. And there's a lot of areas when you see what's going on in some of our states and countries where we saw flaring. And the last thing I'll mention, which I said once before, we must

reverse the Trump administration's decision on methane. That is what's made it incredibly dangerous. And I -- if that -- if we couldn't reverse that, no, I would -- I would ban it immediately because this thing is -- this is very dangerous what they've done on methane.

BURNETT: Well Senator, thank you so very much.


BURNETT: I appreciate it, we all appreciate it. And -


BURNETT: -- Democratic candidate (ph) Joe Biden to the (ph) stage. He'll be followed by Senator Bernie Sanders and then Senator Elizabeth Warren.