Speaking at a conference in Dubai on Tuesday, actor Harrison Ford called out world leaders who promote anti-science viewpoints in an apparent dig at President Donald Trump and other climate change deniers in Congress.
"Around the world, elements of leadership – including in my own country – to preserve their state and the status quo, deny or denigrate science," Ford said, according to USA Today. "They are on the wrong side of history."
Ford's comments came during a speech the 76-year-old actor gave on the closing day of the World Government Summit in Dubai. And although the Star Wars and Indiana Jones actor never mentions Trump by name, it seems clear that he was aiming his comments at the president, given Trump's track record of being critical of climate change science.
While acknowledging that there are no easy answers to the climate change-related difficulties that face humanity, the actor said a vital first step is for people to elect leaders who are tuned in to the science of climate change, and understand the dire consequences we face if we continue to ignore them.
"This current government is bent on dismantling all of the gains we've made in the protection of the environment, in human health," Ford said.
Trump often comments on daily weather patterns like snow storms and cold fronts as though such isolated events are climate, which is actually defined as weather that is averaged over a long period of time. As recently as Monday, Trump took to Twitter to poke fun at Sen. Amy Klobuchar's announcement that she is running for president, noting that the Minnesota senator was "...talking proudly of fighting global warming while standing in a virtual blizzard of snow, ice and freezing temperatures."
"Bad timing," the president added.
Ford is a long-time advocate for nature conservancy and often lends his voice and image to various efforts to fight climate change and protect the oceans. Before he took the stage in Dubai, the conference's organizers played a video called Nature Is Speaking that Ford narrated for Conservation International. In it, he gives voice to the force of nature as an entity and talks of how vital it is to protect the world's oceans, as well as the dire consequences that await humankind if we continue to pollute and overfish as we do today.
"One way or another, every living thing here needs me," Ford intones in the video. "I'm the source. I'm what they crawled out of."
In his comments, Ford called on the nations of the world and government leaders to rely on "sound science" to guide their decision-making when it comes to the environment. He also pointed out that it won't be the elite political leaders who are most affected by climate change's consequences, but those on the lowest end of the economic scale.
"We are faced (with), what I believe, is the greatest moral crisis of our time," Ford added.