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Presidential candidates make climate change claims amid record high temperatures this month

River to River, hosted by Ben Kieffer

During the first Republican debate for the 2024 presidential election, no hands were raised when eight candidates were asked if they believed human behavior is causing climate change.

Environmental engineer Jerry Schnoor visits with River to River host Ben Kieffer to evaluate the candidates' claims on climate change and explain how fossil fuels are raising global temperatures, upending weather patterns, and endangering animal species.

High school student and environmental activist Hannah Hayes also joins the conversation to weigh in on how younger activists are using lawsuits and TikTok to combat climate change.


  • Jerry Schnoor, professor of environmental engineering, co-director, University of Iowa Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research
  • Hannah Hayes, senior, Roosevelt High School, Des Moines
Ben Kieffer is the host of IPR's River to River
Dani Gehr is a producer for River to River and Talk of Iowa. Dani came to Iowa from her hometown in the northwest suburbs of Chicago to attend Iowa State University, where she received a bachelor’s degree in journalism, international studies and French. Before coming to IPR, Dani covered local government in Story County for the Ames Tribune and Des Moines Register.
Samantha McIntosh is a talk show producer at Iowa Public Radio. Prior to IPR, Samantha worked as a reporter for radio stations in southeast and west central Iowa under M&H Broadcasting, and before that she was a weekend music host for GO 96.3 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.